In recent months, media such as the BBC and Guardian have reported significant increases in holiday accommodation costs in the face of unprecedented demand for holidays in the UK.
As a charity the Landmark Trust is committed to setting prices that are affordable to as many people as possible. This commitment is cemented into our strategic objectives, now and in the future. However we have to ensure we generate enough income through lettings to cover the cost of operating and maintaining our fragile buildings.
We have recently experienced significant rises in our operating costs, including laundry, waste disposal, insurance, energy, building materials and specialist contractors. Landmark must meet these costs, or we will put the charity, which has no endowment, at risk. Therefore, across our portfolio we must continue to increase prices to cover cost inflation.
All the rental income we generate - the price you pay for a Landmark break - goes towards running and caring for historic buildings that have been saved from danger and furthering the work of our charity. None of it goes towards paying investors or servicing debt.
In 2021, the average price per person per night of staying in a Landmark is £52, and 60% of our properties are available to book at certain times of the year for less than £20. We have initiated schemes for those who might not be able to afford a Landmark break: since 2014 we have been running 50 For Free, enabling more than 1,500 beneficiaries of charities to stay in a range of properties so far. This year we are piloting an expanded scheme, Beyond 50 for Free, with four partner charities, including the Healthcare Workers' Foundation and Young Lives vs Cancer. Recognising the intense pressure on the health service during Covid, we offered our buildings for free to NHS workers.
We really value everyone who chooses to book a Landmark stay and we remain committed to keeping prices as low as we can whilst covering our costs. In doing so our charity can continue its mission to rescue buildings at risk and give people extraordinary experiences.