WORKSHOP: CASE STUDY - National Trust wins race against time

ANNIE KELLY

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Background: The National Trust had to raise around £20 million in just 50 days to purchase the Victorian estate Tyntesfield House. Tyntesfield is the last private Victorian house and estate on such a grand scale to survive intact with all its furnishings and adjuncts. The estate went on sale on 19 May following the death of its last private owner, Lord Wraxall.

Aims of the appeal: A major fundraising appeal was launched to secure the future of Tyntesfield. The National Trust aimed to purchase the property for use by the public and raise the profile of the estate in order to raise a further £10 million needed for restoration and maintenance. It targeted its existing supporter base as well as launching a wider appeal to secure donations from the general public and international donors.

The trust also wanted to reach local councils, organisations and high-value donors.

How it worked: The campaign had to be quickly rolled out to stand a chance of raising the amount required. Advertising agency Bluefrog produced creative, which used the strapline "Time is running out for Tyntesfield", to rally support for the initiative.

"For this project the creative focus was simple - it was essential that members gave quickly,

said Mark Phillips, managing director at Bluefrog.

"Good intentions were of little use, the National Trust needed to know they had the resources to buy the property."

The main focus of the campaign was the organisation's 30,000-strong supporter base. An information pack asking for donations was supported with an insert campaign, which was included in a mass magazine mailing, and inserts were also placed in all new membership and renewal packs.

All National Trust properties were sent information leaflets and posters to appeal for donations and to raise awareness of how urgently the money was needed.

The trust designed a web site with information and an online donation facility, and an email appeal was also sent to 1,000 supporters, asking recipients to lend their support and pass the message on to friends and family.

Non-members were also targeted with an advertising campaign, which appeared across national newspapers, and the trust rolled out a door-drop leaflet campaign in Tyntesfield's surrounding area.

Results The campaign raised more than £24 million in the allotted time through individual donations, fundraising grants and treasury tax concessions.

The National Heritage Memorial Fund pledged £1.75 million, the largest-ever amount awarded in a single donation. Two contributions from individual donors raised £5.5 million.

Public response to the campaign exceeded the trust's target by £500,000.

Just over £1.5 million was raised from more than 50,000 individual donations in just over 10 days.

"The National Trust campaign has been strongly supported by the local community,

said Bella Price, the National Trust's Wessex fundraising manager. "We have a large band of enthusiasts who are delivering leaflets and doing local fundraising to help the campaign, and the interest has been outstanding.

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