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Lake District Osprey Project

osprey

In 2001 ospreys made a momentous return to the Lake District, after being extinct in England for decades. The ospreys now return from Africa to their nest near Bassenthwaite Lake each spring and more than 19 chicks have fledged since they returned.

The visitor viewpoints at Dodd Wood are great locations for watching the birds fishing in the lake.The viewpoints are open to visitors from April to August and volunteers are on hand to provide information and answer questions about the birds.

Big screens in Whinlatter Visitor Centre show live close-up pictures of the nest throughout the season, thanks to new camera systems. The cameras also help staff and volunteers monitor the nest and carry out round-the-clock surveillance to protect the birds from disturbance and egg collection.

The ‘Osprey Bus’ runs during the season allowing visitors to travel around Bassenthwaite Lake and visit the osprey sites without needing to use their cars. Visit Cumbria County Council’s website for the timetable (Bus 74)

Funds raised support the nest protection work, and help develop the project’s educational facilities, bringing the birds to as wide an audience as possible.

  

Fix the Fells

Fix the Fells is a partnership programme between the Lake District National Park, National Trust, Natural England, Lake District Foundation, Friends of the Lake District and Cumbria County Council to repair erosion scars which have developed over the years, and to make sure that these scars are prevented in the future.

The Lake District fells are enjoyed by millions of walkers every year but the high level paths can be surprisingly fragile and the sheer number of visitors leave a mark on the landscape. Over time grass is compacted by heavy foot traffic and dies. Heavy rainfall quickly washes away the exposed soil down the steep slopes into streams, rivers and eventually the lakes, where the increased amount of silt causes havoc for fish and other species.

The work being done aims to prevent this loss of grass and soil by designing and creating paths that are resilient to wear and tear and reduce the impact on the surrounding landscape. On steep slopes you may see ‘pitching’ where stone has been laid, while on less steep slopes the paths may have been repaired by a ‘soil inversion’ technique with the aid of a digger.

More information on the Fix the Fells Website

Red Squirrels Northern England

The red squirrel is our only native British squirrel but is at serious risk of extinction if population numbers continue to decline. The main cause of this decline is competition with the American grey squirrel, an introduced species which is larger than the red and better able to survive harsh weather and occasional food shortages. It also breeds more successfully and quickly out-competes its red cousin for food.

Cumbria is one of the few counties in the country where red squirrels can still be seen and RSNE is working to protect and increase numbers. They are working with landowners to carry out conservation work to benefit the reds in 5 designated red squirrel reserves at Whinlatter, Thirlmere, Greystoke, Whinfell, and Garsdale/Mallerstang.

The project supports networks of volunteers and contractors to carry out grey squirrel control in these reserves, and their 5km buffer zones, and train volunteers to assist with population surveys and monitoring. They provide education programmes and web-based teaching materials for schools, and work to raise the profile of the red squirrel through educational walks, talks and events for the wider community, signs and interpretation panels at the reserves, their website and local media.

Take a look at the great work that RSNE carry out, thanks to the support of our fantastic fundraisers:

  

Barkbooth Lot Nature Reserve

Barkbooth Lot

Barkbooth Lot Nature Reserve is situated near the head of the Winster Valley and covers 27 ha of diverse habitat, including rough fell land, oak woodland, meadow and tarns.

Staff have worked to repair walls and fences and add gates so that livestock and deer are kept out of some areas to protect the oak woodland from grazing and allow an understorey of plants to develop. Bluebells carpet the floor of the woodland in spring.

The meadow area is being restored by planting with native species. Scrub is controlled to maintain areas of open grassland that are needed by rare butterflies such as the high brown fritillary. The bracken is controlled in summer  and is grazed by cattle in winter to stop it keep it under control.

Damselflies and dragonflies are numerous around the tarns on Barkbooth Lot and interpretation panels give visitors information about Barkbooth Lot and a path system has been created. Take a look at the great work our fundraisers have supported recently:

 

Cumbria Outdoors John Muir Award

John Muir

The John Muir Award encourages people of all backgrounds to connect with, enjoy and care for wild places through a structured yet adaptable scheme. It encourages awareness and responsibility for the natural environment, in a spirit of fun, adventure and exploration.

The Award is the main engagement initiative of the John Muir Trust. You can find out more on the John Muir Award website.

Cumbria Outdoors use the John Muir Award with young people aged 7-19. Through activities to enjoy, explore and understand the outdoors they raise awareness of the importance of conserving wild places. As part of this the young people take responsibility for the environment through hands-on activities such as footpath maintenance, woodland management or non-native invasive species control. The Award isn’t competitive but challenges each participant.

Funds are also used to help people get involved who would not ordinarily have the opportunity to do so due to a range of social disadvantage. Take a look at what our fundraisers supported last year:

   

Dubwath Silver Meadow Wetland Nature Reserve

Projects-Dubwath

Dubwath Silver Meadows is a new nature reserve which has been created as part of the Heritage Lottery funded Bassenthwaite Reflections programme.

This seven hectares wetland site was once part of Bassenthwaite Lake and is now home to a range of special wetland flora and fauna.

There are access-for-all paths and boardwalks which take you around the site. Walk through living Willow Hides and stop off at replica Celtic and Norse style shelters. Look out for rare and not so rare plants, flowers and birds and if you’re quiet you could come across the resident roe deer or maybe even a badger if you come at night! Be very quiet and you may spot the Red Squirrels feeding at their hazel nut feeders! Whatever the season, there’s always something to captivate and inspire.

Take a look at what our fundraisers have helped support:

dubwath

Experience the River

Experience the River

South Cumbria Rivers Trust works to protect and conserve the aquatic environments of South Cumbria. In order to achieve this they provide a local education programme aimed at giving the both the local population and visitors an appreciation of our waters and an improved environmental awareness

‘Experience the River’ days give children from local schools a chance to visit their local rivers, observe the river habitat and sketch and describe the river and wildlife they find there. They have a go at river dipping and use nets, trays and identification keys to find and identify creatures in the river. They investigate the riverbank habitat by collecting plant samples, making rubbings of tree bark and recording any insect life found. They also draw cross sections of the river by measuring the river width and depth. Inspired by the river visit the children then create paintings based on their findings. Funds raised for this project provide for the environmental education of local schoolchildren.

Take a look at the work supported by our fantastic fundraisers:

 

Fix the Fells Our Man at the Top

The National Trust has four teams of upland path workers, working on fell paths throughout the Central, Eastern, Northern and Western lakes. Over a number of years the teams have evolved into an experienced and highly skilled workforce

To build a sustainable path and recreate a natural landscape, team members must be part craftsperson and part artist. Several new techniques have been developed, and path workers from around the world have visited them to learn new skills and benefit from their expertise.

From March to November, the teams work full-time on the fells, interspersing project work with minor repairs and general maintenance on the whole path network. They often do a week’s work in four days to reduce time lost when walking to remote sites. During the winter the teams move down into the valleys and work on fencing, walling, hedge laying and tree planting on National Trust properties.

These teams consist of local people, providing much needed jobs into local communities. The cost of maintaining each team member is £20,000 per annum. This includes equipment, waterproofs and other costs.

Fix the Fells Our Woman at The Top

Fix the Fells

It is great to know that we have our first woman, Sarah Anderson, who works with one of the four teams of upland path workers, working on fell paths throughout the Central, Eastern, Northern and Western lakes for the National Trust.

From March to November, the teams work full-time on the fells, interspersing project work with minor repairs and general maintenance on the whole path network. They often do a week’s work in four days to reduce time lost when walking to remote sites. During the winter the teams move down into the valleys and work on fencing, walling, hedge laying and tree planting on National Trust properties.

These teams consist of local people, providing much needed jobs into local communities. The cost of maintaining each team member is £20,000 per annum. This includes equipment, waterproofs and other costs.

Take a look at what Sarah has been up to over the past year:

OWATT Project Update

Flowers and Fells Fund

Surveying meadows

The Lake District’s landscape is a patchwork of habitats. Our meadows and peatlands add to the diversity of plants and wildlife we find here, but need our help to be restored back to their former glory.

Cumbria Wildlife Trust works with farmers and small holders to enhance, restore and manage flower-rich hay meadows in the area, using traditional practices to increase plant diversity. They also promote the landscape of hay meadows through events, educational workshops, walks and talks.

Hay meadows are important for the plants they support. A hay meadow can support an incredible 50 plant species/sq. metre! Traditional meadows are still found in Cumbria, where higher altitude meadows support specialist plants species, such as wood crane’s-bill and many of the lady’s mantle species, and lowland meadows, are characterised by a rich diversity of more common plant species. Such a wealth of plant species can in turn provide habitats for many different animal species including the brown hare, insects such as the great yellow bumble bee, and birds such as skylark, curlew, lapwing and twite.

Cumbria Wildlife Trust is also helping protect wetlands across Cumbria, demonstrating new restoration techniques and building partnerships to protect Cumbria’s peatlands. The project is working on a wide range of important wetland habitats including fens, blanket bog and lowland raised mire. The majority of these habitats occur on relatively deep peat soils which are collectively known as peatlands … but these peatlands urgently need careful management to reverse the damage caused by drainage, heavy grazing, regular burning, cultivation, forestry and other management.

Restoring the balance of nature in our peatlands benefits both people and wildlife:

  • Carbon storage

Peatlands are the UK’s largest carbon store – with 28.5 million tonnes in the Lake District alone. Our damaged peatlands are decomposing, releasing carbon dioxide back into the atmosphere.

Water quality and drinking water.

70 per cent of UK drinking water is from upland (generally peat dominated) catchments.

  • Flood control

If the Sphagnum moss is damaged, the surface dries, crumbles and cracks in summer; later rapidly eroding during severe weather. Blocking drains slows run-off, whilst wetlands in valleys store floodwater.

  • Archaeology

Peat has preserved remarkable ancient graves and wooden artefacts that haven’t survived elsewhere.

  • Wildlife

Fascinating specialist species including carnivorous plants have adapted to the harsh peatland environment. Many have population strongholds in Cumbria. The most threatened species depend on the wettest bogs or need large areas of continuous habitat.

Take a look at the great work our fundraisers have supported recently:

Living Seas

Living Seas Projects

Living Seas. What picture does the phrase conjure up? A rocky reef bursting with brightly coloured fish, corals and sponges? A boat trip in the company of leaping dolphins and playful seals? Fishermen hauling nets that are brimful of big, tasty fish? Living Seas are all these things and more.

But the UK’s seas are not Living Seas. Decades of neglect have left them damaged and degraded, a shadow of their former diversity and abundance. We urgently need your help to bring them back to life. The next five years are critical. It is literally ‘make or break’ time. With new laws and Government commitments in the offing, we have a ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity. If we make the very best of that opportunity, pushing every step of the way, our seas will turn the corner and start to recover their health. If we do not, they will continue on their downward spiral

Living Seas are The Wildlife Trusts’ vision for the future of the UK’s seas. Within Living Seas, marine wildlife thrives, from the depths of the ocean to the coastal shallows.
In Living Seas:

  • Wildlife and habitats are recovering from past decline as our use of the seas’ resources becomes environmentally sustainable.
  • The natural environment is adapting well to a changing climate, and ocean processes are helping to slow down climate change.
  • People are inspired by marine wildlife and value the sea for the many ways in which it supports our quality of life.

Marine Protected Areas

Our seas are suffering from overfishing, exploitation for resources and damage to natural habitats. Marine Protected Areas – parts of the sea where wildlife and habitats are protected – are key to the future health of our seas, their ecosystems and wildlife.

Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are places at sea where human activities such as fishing are restricted. They are a tried and tested means of conserving habitats and wildlife at sea and there are many around the world. MPAs don’t just protect wildlife. They can have an influence beyond their boundaries, as growing wildlife populations spill out into the surrounding (non-protected) sea. In the UK there is a well-researched example of this at Lundy in the Bristol Channel where lobster in a ‘no-take’ zone were growing to be larger than those in the surrounding fished area as they were protected from fishing. Eventually the lobsters in the surrounding fished area became larger as they spread out from the area excluded to fishing.

If they are in the right place and part of a wider well-managed network of protected areas, MPAs can bring even greater benefits, improving the overall health of the marine environment and helping it recover from past impacts and sustain current pressures – living seas. To achieve this, MPA networks must protect not just rare and threatened wildlife, but the whole range of ‘typical’ habitats and wildlife found in healthy seas. For us in the UK this includes habitats like our cold water reefs, seagrass meadows, kelp forests and sandy, gravelling or muddy sea floors.

Take a look at the great work our fundraisers have helped support recently:

Living Seas Project Living Seas Project

Small Grants Fund

Our Small Grants Fund allows us to give grants of up to £1,000 to local community groups and organisations for small scale projects which make a difference to local communities. These sorts of projects often otherwise struggle to find funding.

We have supported numerous small projects over the years. Here are some examples:

Windermere and Bowness Civic Society’s Millerground Enhancement Project. Millerground is a publically accessible area on the Windermere lakeshore, 2km north of Bowness and includes footpaths, viewpoints and access to fields and woodland. The area has been neglected and become overgrown and underused by the public as a consequence. The work, involved a wide range of volunteers from Age UK and local schools to remove overgrown vegetation to open up the area to wildflowers, restore footpaths, and replace and install picnic benches.

Giggle Alley Centenary Project. This is an area which lies on a small knoll adjacent to the village of Eskdale Green on the western edge of the Lake District National Park. Extending to nine hectares the mixed woodland has within it a hidden Japanese Garden dating from 1914. Our support enabled the Garden to be maintained for access and enjoyment by the public.

Hincaster Woodland group’s ‘Access to Mabbin Wood’ project. This application was to create a pedestrian gated access from Mabbin Wood Lane into the Hincaster parish portion of the wood.

Take a look at more recent projects here:

2014/15 – 7 projects

  

Penrith & District Red Squirrels

Founded in 1994 and becoming a registered charity in 2008, Penrith & District Red Squirrel Group (P&DRSG) are committed to preserving native red squirrels in their natural environment by promoting the preservation of the red squirrel population within Penrith & District and their protection from extinction in the wild.

The P&DRSG project is a conservation initiative seeking to protect and maintain the existing and widespread red squirrel population. Covering a vast 600 square miles along the river Eden, Greystoke and Ullswater Valley, the project aims to control grey squirrels, supplementary feed red squirrels, monitor squirrel population densities, manage squirrel pox virus disease outbreaks, raise public awareness and manage teams of rangers & supporters to carry out this vital work.

Residents and visitors alike have opportunities to see red squirrel as they are present in the majority of the suitable habitats in the area. Although some may be privately owned, public access to most of the woodland sites can be obtained via the public footpaths and bridal ways running through them as well as from adjacent public roads and footpaths.

To see the impact your donations have, take a look at the project updates below:

  

Saving Eden

saving eden

The Eden Invasive Species Project aims to protect the river Eden and its tributaries against the invasion of non-native plants and animals.

This requires the management of invasive species already present, whilst preventing the introduction of new species.

The project involves Eden Rivers Trust Staff and volunteers from the Eden valley and beyond.

Invasive species compete with our native flora and fauna, so their management will benefit local indigenous plants and animals.

The River Eden and its tributaries have conservation designations because species like the Atlantic salmon, white-clawed crayfish, bullhead, water crowfoot and river and brook lamprey can be found there. This project has positive impacts not only for these species, but many others too.

Ullswater Environment Recovery Fund

In December 2015, we launched the Ullswater Environment Recovery Fund in partnership with the Ullswater Association.

In the aftermath of the floods, many residents and businesses in Ullswater were contacted by members of the public who wanted to help to support the recovery of the natural environment. The

Ullswater economy is highly dependent on tourism so it is important that the natural environment and access to it is restored to ensure that visitors keep coming here and the visitor economy can thrive again.

We set up ononline fundraising campaign on the 9th December and were immediately overwhelmed by the generosity of donors. By 31st March 2016 we had raised over £5,600 and in May 2016 we opened the fund to applications, and we are pleased to be funding 2 projects this Autumn:

Project 1 : Slow the Flow in Grisedale

Delivered by: Patterdale Parish Council

“Slow The Flow” is a partnership project that aims to develop a set of sustainable solutions for each of the main becks in Patterdale to both “slow the flow”, and stabilise land in the upstream areas. As a result of the Floods of December 2015 the Parish of Patterdale is working with partner agencies including the Eden Rivers Trust, Natural England, the Lake District National Park and Environment Agency to develop sustainable environmentally friendly solutions to water and land management in the upstream catchment areas of the Dale.

This first Slow the Flow project is a pilot project carried out in the Grisedale Valley, from Grisedale Tarn down to Waterfall Wood in Patterdale in particular, which is owned by Matson Ground Estate. Working with the landowner, Eden Rivers Trust and other agencies, the valley will be mapped and solutions to improve water storage and land stability upstream will be trailed.The knowledge gained in this pilot project will then be used to develop solutions at the other areas of the Dale including Hartsop, Deepdale, Greenside, and Glencoyne. and across similar areas of Cumbria.

Thanks to a £1,000 grant from the Ullswater Environment Recovery Fund, and support from the Cumbria Community Foundation and the Ullswater Community Flood Fund, the pilot project will deliver the following water and land management outcomes:

Water Management

Step 1 – Map Grisedale Beck from Grisedale Tarn to Waterfall wood, monitoring water flow and gravel deposits

Step 2 – Identify solutions for the better management of the beck and slowing of the water flow to range from the creation of potential water storage areas by removing beck banks to the widening of the beck to increase capacity and reduce gravel movement.

Step 3 – Implement the solutions and create a template process for use in other areas

Land Management

Step 1 – Geo-survey of major landslips in the Grisedale Valley, identifying the cause and impact

Step 2 – Identify other potential weak spots for future landslips

Step 3 – Implement land stabilisation programme where required – for example tree planting and again create a template process for use in other areas

The project is critical to creating a sustainable and effective approach to overall water and land management not only in Patterdale but elsewhere. By seeking to develop an environmentally friendly set of solutions the need to protect the downstream settlements in the Dale can be balanced with the needs of protecting the upstream environment. The site is fully accessible to the public, and work by the Eden Rivers Trust, local volunteers and specialist contractors commenced in July and will hopefully be completed by October 2016.

Example of Grisedale Valley Landslip
Example of a landslip in the langdale valley

Project 2 : Angle tarn Beck to Hartsop Access Improvement

Delivered by: Lake District National Park Authority

This project will repair the footpath between Angle Tarn Beck and Hartsop village along the side of Lingy Crag/Brock Crags in the Ullswater Valley. The purpose of the project is to upgrade an existing footpath to reduce damage to the surrounding vegetation and to enable a wider group of users to access the route. The existing route is badly drained and uneven making it inaccessible for some less agile walkers. Currently people are avoiding the poorly-drained boggy sections area and diverting onto the surrounding fellside, damaging vegetation and accelerating soil erosion. Soil that washes off the fell into the lake reduces water quality in Angle Tarn beck and Ullswater, damaging aquatic life.

Thanks to a £1,000 grant from the Ullswater Environment Recovery Fund, and support from the LDNPA Access Improvement Fund, a 500m section of the route will be upgraded with improved drainage and surfacing. The improved drainage will reduce the amount of soil washing off the fell, while improved surfacing will ensure that walkers remain on the path, giving the vegetation chance to recover and prevent further soil erosion.

As well as restoring and protecting the natural vegetation and water quality of the Ullswater valley, local residents and visitors will benefit from improved access the popular route. Last year a new footbridge was installed at Angletarn to and improvements to this footpath will further improve access to the fells. The site is fully accessible to the public, and work by the National Trust, National Park and tenant farmer will commence in September and hopefully be completed by November.

Warton Crag

Warton Crag nature reserve is part of the Arnside and Silverdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and overlooks Morecambe Bay in Lancashire. The reserve has a rich variety of habitats including areas of limestone pavement and ledges, with mixed woodland, limestone grassland and scrub.

Warton Crag is extremely important nationally because it is home to several rare butterfly species. These include northern brown argus, pearl bordered fritillary and high brown fritillary, which are UK Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP) species, and the small pearl bordered fritillary which is listed as a species of conservation concern.

The habitats that these species favour are under constant threat of encroachment by scrub and dense bracken. To keep the areas open the Wildlife Trust and local volunteers cut scrub, manage the bracken, coppice the woodland and use cattle to graze them. By working with local volunteers the project hopes to strengthen links with the local community, raise awareness and increase support to assist with management and monitoring work at Warton Crag in the future.

Donations help support and extend the management work, take a look at what our fundraisers supported last year:

 

Japanese Tour Operators support conservation in the Lake District

Last year members of the Japan Forum collectively raised over £13,000 to help the National Trust to improve the footpath access around Beatrix Potter’s beautiful farmhouse, Hill Top, in Near Sawrey.

The generous donations of visitors choosing to book their tour with Japan Forum businesses will be used to support the off-road path project between Hawkshead and Near Sawrey. The aim of the project is to create a fully off-road route, which will make it both safer and more enjoyable for those moving between Hawkshead and Near Sawrey.

Last year, the following businesses were involved:

  • TDR Tour’s Express, Inc.
  • Worldbridge, Inc.
  • JTB World Vacations, Inc.
  • Nippon Travel Agency Co., Ltd.
  • JTB Media-Retailing, Corp.
  • Jalpak Co., Ltd
  • Hankyu Travel International Co.,Ltd.
  • JTB Tokyo Metropolitan Corp.
  • Hankyu Travel International Co.,Ltd.
  • Eurasia Travel Co.,Ltd.

Here are some pictures of our member businesses celebrating another successful year!

Eurasia Travel

Hankyu Travel International

Hanshin Friend Tour

JALPAK

JTB Media Retailing

TDR Tours Express

World Bridge

New Director for Nurture Lakeland

In the same week that the Lake District was awarded World Heritage Site status, we were delighted to appoint a new director of Nurture Lakeland, Sarah Swindley.

This marks an exciting time for Nurture Lakeland. We recently submitted an application to the Charity Commission to set up the Lake District Foundation, which will build on the work of Nurture Lakeland and will secure our place as one of the leading charities raising funds for the conservation, protection and improvement of the physical and natural environment and cultural heritage of the Lake District.

Sarah says, “I am so excited to be taking on this new role at such an important time in the history of the Lake District. The Lake District National Park Partnership and the Trustees of Nurture Lakeland have big plans for the future and my first job will be to oversee the launch of the Lake District Foundation, a new charity that will build on the legacy of Nurture Lakeland and help deliver this shared vision. To be able to take both the skills I have acquired over many years as a charity leader and my love of the natural world into this role is the opportunity of a lifetime”.

Sarah comes to Nurture Lakeland from her previous role as CEO of Lancashire Women’s Centres where since 2011 she has successfully developed the size, turnover and impact of the charity. She has managed the organisation through a period of constant change and has won awards for designing and delivering innovative projects.

Gill Houston, chair of Nurture Lakeland board of trustees says, “We are delighted that Sarah is joining Nurture Lakeland. There are ever increasing numbers of visitors coming to the Lake District which gives us both a greater opportunity and a greater need to inspire visitors to help protect the natural environment. Sarah will be instrumental in enabling us to deliver our strategy to do this”.

Sarah is due to take up her new position in September 2017.

Sarah Swindley

News from our beneficiaries: the National Trust

National Trust invites collaboration in response to challenges facing the Lake District

The National Trust, which directly looks after a fifth of the Lake District, is inviting local communities and expert organisations to join it in responding to challenges facing the Lake District. Included in those, says the conservation charity, are climate change, declining wildlife, the viability of hill farming and the impact of Brexit.

Nurture Lakeland supports some of the work of the National Trust by liasing with Japanes tour companes to invite donations from customers to support conservation work at Beatrix Potter’s former home, Hill Top.

The National Trust has set out seven principles to guide its work in the Lake District in the hope that this will lead to more effective ways of working with others.

The principles are based on understanding that the Lake District landscapes have changed and adapted for thousands of years, including to the evolving needs of people. The principles are to: protect the natural and cultural fabric of the Lake District; work with nature; be guided by the lie of the land; adapt to the changing needs of society; find shared purpose; work with others; and, take the long view.

National Trust Assistant Director of Operations, Mike Innerdale, says the principles form a positive base for developing critical relationships and conversations that will enable the Trust to do more for nature, whilst also championing the cultural heritage and way of life that needs to continue if this globally significant and inspirational landscape is to be maintained and improved. Many of the issues the Trust sets out are at the heart of the Lake District National Park Management Plan and also the World Heritage Site bid.

As Mike Innerdale explains:

“We’re entering a new chapter in the history of the Lakes and how this landscape is being managed. Working with and being informed by our farm tenants, who manage much of the land in our ownership, as well as those who manage neighbouring land, will be critical. We recognise that we don’t have all the answers and we will achieve far more through collaboration.

“The implications of Brexit in particular is an area we want to make sure we are working with others on as funding for much of our land management comes, currently, from Europe. We think providing benefits to society that include clean water, healthy soils, high quality food, flood protection and access provides the best case for securing ongoing support and funding for the Lake District and its landscapes and we see a shared purpose in this.

“Nature underpins all of this but it is not in universal good health. There is clear evidence that we are losing soils, wildlife has declined and our rivers are in a pattern of repeat flooding. We need to address this by collaborating with those who know the landscape inside out and manage it with us.” he added.

The Trust’s new working principles were developed in consultation with key stakeholders over a 10 month period. ‘Looking After the Lakes’ also gives examples of these principles in practice such as through the Wild Ennerdale Partnership and Fix the Fells and people can find out more online at www.nationaltrust.org.uk/thelakes and follow the story on social media using #lookingafterthelakes.

News from our members: James Bell Photography

A special offer from fantastic local photographer and long-standing supporter of Nurture Lakeland, James Bell.

James Bell is a long-standing supporter of Nurture Lakeland and has now produced his first Lake District Landscape Photography book – “Capture Lakeland volume 1”.

James is an extremely talented photographer and over the years he has very generously allowed Nurture Lakeland to use his images to help raise our profile – you may recognise some of his work on your fundraising and membership certificates, and on our website!

The new book is now open for pre-order with deliveries later this summer, and everyone who places an order before 24th July will have their name printed in the book and also receive 2 signed and numbered prints. Follow this link to place your order.

If you are interested in retailing this beautiful book in your business, please do get in touch with James.

 

Fix the Fells Project Update 2016-17

Fix the Fells (FTF) is a long-term partnership programme which aims to protect our spectacular Lakeland fells from erosion by maintaining and repairing the paths. Most of the work is funded by donations, legacies and grants. Last year Nurture Lakeland business fundraisers raised over £19,000 for Fix the Fells through the Visit Give Protect Scheme. The generous donations from visitors will help to protect the Lake District landscape for everyone to enjoy.

The National Trust specialist Upland Ranger Teams carry out much of the repair work, usually focussing on a handful of major projects each year. They are assisted by volunteers, referred to as ‘lengthsmen’, a term used in medieval times for someone paid to walk the length of the parish and repair any road and unblock ditches.

Fix the Fells rangers and volunteers work year-round to protect our spectacular Lakeland fells from erosion by maintaining and repairing the paths. Over the last year they have been working on both new projects and repairs and general maintenance on the whole path network across the Lake District National Park.

Projects in 2016/17 included work on the Brown Tongue path on Scafell Pike, Glencoyne/Seldom Seen, Dollywaggon, Thesthwaite Cove and Rigghead, to name but a few.

Volunteers had an exceptional year of activity, completing 593 drain runs, gifting 2,030 upland days in total and helping to maintain and repair more than 250 upland paths – the most successful year since the volunteer programme was launched in 2007!

In 2017/18 the Fix the Fells teams will be undertaking a major work programme to repair the devastating damage caused to upland paths by Storm Desmond in December 2015. Funded by the Rural Payments Agency, almost 2,500 man days will be required to mend the designated paths, including popular routes on Cat Bells, Helvellyn and Haystacks, while machine work will take place on 7,000-metres of path and hundreds of tonnes of stone will be lifted by helicopter onto the fells.

Thank you for helping to protect this wonderful landscape.

fix the fells fix the fells fix the fells

Small Grants Fund and Ullswater Environment Recovery Fund

small grants

The Small Grants Fund and Ullswater Environment Recovery Fund are now open for applications. Deadline for submissions: 5pm Tuesday 1st August 2017

If you are running a project in Cumbria and are looking for funding, we may be able to help with a small grant of up to £1,000 to cover all or part of the cost of the project.

Find out more at: nurturelakeland.org/get-involved/apply-for-funding

Take a look at examples of projects that we have funded in the past here:

Dubwath Silver Meadows Project Update 2016-17

Thank you for your amazing support for the Dubwath Silver Meadows project.

Dubwath Silver Meadows is one of the best sites in Cumbria for people to see the plant and animal wildlife of wetland and other habitats that range from open wetland to wet woodland and from open grassland to dry woodland. Its peaty soils soak up water and then slowly release it, acting like a sponge. This gives it an important role in controlling the flow of water into Bassenthwaite Lake and flooding in the catchment and beyond.

dubwathThe Dubwath site is traditionally wet and regularly floods, but 2016 was a particularly challenging year following the damage caused by the storms of December 2015.  Visitor numbers were down whilst volunteers spent much of 2016 generally cleaning up the site after the floods and repairing damage.  The Celtic shelter, which was badly damaged, has been rebuilt.  Hides, boardwalks and information boards – newly installed in late December, just in time for Storm Desmond – have been repaired.  Your donations helped buy materials and fuel for all this work.

By the end of the year, focus could return to regular and planned maintenance.  The new log seat, replacing one that had rotted and which was finally broken up by the floods, has been replaced.  As well as rebuilding the Celtic shelter, planned repairs were made to the wattle-and-daub of the Norse shelter.  Cutting back, lopping, tree management and general pruning were all carried out.

A new white board for visitors’ comments has been purchased using funds donated through Nurture Lakeland.  This is proving to be particularly popular with children, who use it to list the birds, animals and flowers they have seen whilst visiting the site.

Looking forward….

Planned work for Spring/Summer 2017 includes:

  • Replacing rotten floorboards in the Norse Shelter
  • Repair of a section of footpath partly washed away by the floods to improve disabled access
  • Willow weaving and general tidying up of the site
  • Events including the 8th Annual Dawn Chorus (May), a flower Walk (June), various moth counts, bryophyte and plant walks

None of this would be possible without your fundraising efforts.

Thank you again for your amazing support!

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