Our first site selected to benefit from funding from the Woodland Fund was at Coledale Beck on common land owned by the National Trust.
The site at Coledale beck is a 27 ha block of fell edge common land which has now been fenced and planted with 4000 trees. The project was brought about to try to:
• reduce the impact of high water flows on the village of Braithwaite immediately downstream by increasing the percolation rate and holding water in the catchment
• reduce the movement of soils keeping soils in the fells
• reduce the potential for landslip and sediments reaching Bassenthwaite Lake
• increase the trapping of heavy metal solutions washed in from mine waste
• moderate water temperature for fish spawning and
• increase biodiversity
The fencing was concluded in late 2011 and tree planting carried out by volunteers over winter 2011 / 2012. The site has been monitored to ensure it remains ungrazed by stock. Seedling trees will continually be checked and a programme to replace dead saplings will start in late 2014, if needed.
Last year Friends of the Lake District worked to create a new seven hectare native upland woodland at Tongue Gill, near Grasmere. Bev and Jo have installed a hydro-electric power generator feeding off the Tongue Gill beck, so along with the trees absorbing carbon, we don’t think there’s a ‘greener’ piece of land in the Lake District!
Tongue Gill is a rather special site in Grasmere with Wainwright’s Coast-to-Coast footpath running along the northern edge and trees in the gill already hosting native Red Squirrels. We will work with the local Grasmere Red Squirrel group to manage the wood to support the recoveryof red numbers. We will also install a link new path off the Coast-to-Coast so people can walk through and enjoy the woodland as it develops over the coming years. Expanding the woodland cover will also help increase declining woodland bird species, including pied flycatcher, spotted flycatcher, tree pipit, willow warbler and woodcock.
Help to grow the Woodland Fund each year plant and protect trees for people to enjoy today and for future generations.