The National Trust has more than doubled its catering revenues in the last financial year as it continues to focus on recovery from the pandemic, it can be revealed.
The charity, which is responsible for more than 300 properties across the UK, made £70 million from its catering services in 2021/2022, following a loss of more than two-thirds of its catering revenues in the previous year as a result of widespread venue closures or limited food and beverage offerings during the pandemic.
A summary of the National Trust’s finances – sent to members ahead of its upcoming AGM and seen by FEJ – shows that its food and beverage sales increased by 136% in the last financial year, compared to its catering revenues of £29.6m in 2020/21.
The figures show signs that the charity is edging closer towards recovery from the pandemic in terms of its catering revenues, with F&B sales representing its second biggest revenue stream behind membership fees.
Prior to the pandemic, catering had grown to become the National Trust’s second largest source of income, but it dropped to fifth in the list in 2020/21.
Total income from all sectors was £643m in the last financial year, rising from £507m the previous year.
The National Trust is one of the country’s largest food and beverage operators, serving 26 million visitors a year at its venues, which include everything from hill-top tearooms to rosette-awarded fine dining in converted barns, as well as a portfolio of more than 60 pubs.
The charity is also offering free visits to its sites across the country for families this autumn, with tickets available on its website.