Welcome to the autumn update from the Upper Nidderdale Landscape Partnership. In this edition we’ve got a rundown on our current projects, plus you can find out about a new oral history project to get involved in.
Moorlands: People, Places, Stories – New Project Coming Soon!
The open moorlands have long been exploited. Once common land, many areas were enclosed in the 19th century with the rise of private shooting estates. Today, much of the moorland in Upper Nidderdale is still actively managed for shooting and the extensive public rights of way and open access mean that these uplands are also enjoyed by many in their leisure time.
Our Moorlands project, launching in early 2016, aims to explore people’s associations with Upper Nidderdale’s wonderful moorland through oral history and documentary research. However you have experienced the moors, we would love to hear your recollections.We need you! Please get in touch with Historic Nidderdale Project Officer Louise Brown if you would like to get involved in the project, either as a volunteer collecting this history or as someone who would like to share their story.
Photo: Heather moorland above Pateley Bridge
Local artist Gill Kirk, with the support of Nidderdale Visual Arts, has run a series of workshops for adults and school children looking at ‘Hay meadows under the microscope’. Following a visit to one of Upper Nidderdale’s glorious traditional hay meadows to study the plants and flowers first hand, the would-be artists spent a day creating wonderful prints with guidance and support from Gill. What a fantastic way to gain a deeper insight into this important aspect of Upper Nidderdale’s natural and cultural heritage.
Photo: Taking a closer look at Hay Meadows - Gill Kirk
As part of our project working with farmers to improve habitat for wading birds such as lapwing and curlew, Wildlife & Farming Project Officer Tara Challoner has been carrying out soft rush control on areas of land where rushes have become too dominant (seen in the photo). Opening up the ground cover, while still retaining some rushes, creates a better mosaic of habitats for a wide range of birds. Find out more about the project on the upland birds section of our website.
Photo: Soft rush needing management
Renovations of a Root Store at Lodge
The small settlement of Lodge has its origins as a former medieval grange farm of Byland Abbey and was continually occupied up to abandonment in the 1920s. Now the five main buildings are only visible as footprints with just a few courses of stone work still standing.
A small, semi-subterranean building lies just outside of the main settlement – a place for storing root vegetables. The stone built chamber has a stone vaulted roof and was built into the hillside. One corner of the building moved over time and recently caused part of the roof to collapse. This summer local contractors Winship Walling, with funding from Yorkshire Water, carried out repairs to stop further decay of the building. Although only a small part of the village, tucked away on the hillside, this building is an important part of the story of life in this remote part of Upper Nidderdale.
Photo: Scott Winship at Lodge Root Store
A Summer of Events
Many people have been out enjoying Upper Nidderdale this summer. In July the first NiddFest literary festival took place, which celebrated nature through writing and brought together a wide range of literary figures with an enthusiastic and appreciative audience. We’ve had many other events: walks to look at the heritage of Greenhow and Gouthwaite, a Family Fun Day and bird-box making to name just a few – a huge thanks to all of the volunteers who helped make these such a success. Do come along to a Landscape Partnership event in 2016 – we’ll be publishing our events guide early in the New Year.
Photo: Pond dipping in Fishpond Wood
New Tourist Information Centre for Pateley Bridge
Nidderdale Plus now run a new ‘one-stop-shop’ for tourist information, community development and library services in Pateley Bridge. They are located at Station Square, King Street. You’ll find them just round the corner from the bottom of the High Street. Tourist information (and all other services) is available 10am-6pm on Mondays, 10am-4pm on Tuesdays to Fridays and 10am-1pm on Saturdays and Sundays.
Photo: New Nidderdale Plus Office
About the Upper Nidderdale Landscape Partnership
The Landscape Partnership is a £1.8 million scheme for Upper Nidderdale, funded mainly through the Heritage Lottery Fund. Launched in summer 2014, it will run through to July 2018 with two main aims:
to conserve and enhance Upper Nidderdale’s wildlife habitats and historic environment;
to enable people to find out, enjoy and get involved in looking after this fantastic heritage.
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