Dylan Williams - Council Member
I had been aware of the National Trust since a child. Living in Snowdonia it is difficult not to be familiar with the National Trust and the vast hectares of landscape that the Trust owns and manages.
Working in agricultural-related occupations (crop innovation programme, NFU Mutual/NFU Cymru) had given me more insight to the National Trust’s work, especially with tenanted farms.
Whilst browsing the internet one evening I stumbled across an advert for new Council members. The agricultural, landscape and rural tourism aspect of the Trust’s work were very close to my heart, so I decided to bite the bullet and apply for the Council role.
Following a friendly interview, I was noted as a recommended candidate for the 2013 elections and was fortunate enough to be successful by securing enough votes.
Being one of the younger Council members the first Council meeting was slightly daunting. But other members and staff were very welcoming and helpful, and a number of interesting introductions (in both Welsh and English!) were had over coffee.
I believe the Council to be the ‘feel’ of the National Trust, with a diversity of skill, background and geographical representation. The Council can comment on the ‘feel’ of today and discuss how things may ‘feel’ differently against various strategic propositions. Many describe the Council as the eyes and ears of the Trust, and I agree.
Outside of the structured meetings there are opportunities to volunteer in a range of activities depending upon personal interest and time commitment.
I recently spent a day with the Snowdonia operations manager and had a brilliant insight into the daily issues facing the Trust. These types of visits are something I hope to continue – they will help me look and listen to the Trust from various perspectives and geographical locations.
The countryside has and is changing, with an array of different threats and opportunities. Part of our role as Council members is to facilitate these changes in a sustainable manner whilst keeping National Trust land as a living, breathing resource for all to enjoy.
In addition to the thousands of hectares owned by the National Trust it is important that all the properties and historic treasures are given the right consideration to balance heritage conservation with visitor enjoyment.
With the National Trust being such a varied organisation no matter what your background or experience, there would be something of interest for you within the Council (factors such as social media and targeted marketing are just a couple of examples), and I’m sure we would value your perception of how the National Trust ‘ feels’ to you.