Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has announced that the Upper Nidderdale Landscape Partnership Scheme is to receive £1.2million funding.
Upper Nidderdale dominated by the summit of Great Wernside that forms a watershed between Nidderdale and Wharfedale.
To the west is heather moorland with rocky crags while farming is the main feature of the grassland plateau to the east of the moorland.
HLF’s Landscape Partnership (LP) programme – which has now been running for more than a decade – is the most significant grant scheme available for landscape-scale projects.
To date, over £160m has been invested in 91 different areas across the UK helping forge new partnerships between public and community bodies and ensuring people are better equipped to understand and tackle the needs of their local landscapes.
Fiona Spiers, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund for Yorkshire and the Humber, said: Yorkshire’s amazing countryside is under ever-increasing pressure and we must act now to make sure it continues to be one of our greatest assets.
This funding, made available through our Landscape Partnership programme, has helped forge strong local partnerships and secure the future of some of our most threatened landscapes.
These schemes demonstrate a need for urgent conservation work to the natural and built heritage as well as reconnecting rural communities to these places.
They are important on many levels, including being an integral part of our health and well-being and a significant contributor to the tourist economy.
Upper Nidderdale Landscape Partnership Scheme – awarded HLF grant of £1.2million
The area covered by the project is 149 km² and features a dramatic upland valley landscape with high moorland and grassland enclosed by drystone walls and dotted with gritstone farmsteads and barns.
The project area forms part of an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and its quality is recognised on both a national and European scale for its flora and fauna. It is strategically important for supporting bird populations that include merlin, golden plover and redshank. The moors also contain vast reserves of peat that help to reduce downstream flood risk.
There are also remains of 19th century mines and quarries. The project will help conserve the cultural heritage restoring features that include farm buildings; farmers will be encouraged to deliver habitat improvements alongside plans to boost their businesses restoring, creating and connecting wildflower meadows, moorland and woodland.
Local communities will be involved through training and volunteer programmes, visitor trails created and outreach work will tap into schools and urban communities in Leeds and Bradford. The project is led by Harrogate Borough Council.
Nigel Simms, the chair of the Upper Nidderdale Landscape Partnership, said: The Partnership is delighted to receive this award from HLF, which will enable us to invest in Upper Nidderdale’s natural and historic environment.
Just as importantly, it will also allow us to increase opportunities for people to find out more about Upper Nidderdale’s special landscape.
After several years of development work, all of the organisations involved are very excited about getting our projects started.
Main photograph view from Middlesmoor by Janina Holubecki