News from Roland Wicksteed for December 2016

  • Volunteers 2016

    13:22 18 December 2016
    By Roland Wicksteed, Dave Jackson, Dave Almond, James Archer, Neil Winder, Ben Knipe

    Some examples of the work volunteers have been involved with in the Central and East Lakes region over the course of 2016.

    A special thank-you to all the volunteers who helped in the clean up in the Central and East Lakes region after the devastating damage caused by a succession of storms in December 2015.

    Thanks also to the volunteers who throughout 2016 have been an invaluable help on various projects...including...
    Cumbria NT Volunteers "bracken bashing" around juniper trees..Langdale.

    Working Holiday Group putting in new steps at Millerground....
    ... major upgrade works to Millerground path...
    ...and lake-shore revetment work.
    Cumbria NT Volunteers "plug planting" wild flowers near Grasmere.

    Windermere School involved with touch me not balsam and netted carpet moth conservation work at St. Catherine's.

    Reinstating the pond in the walled garden at St. Catherine's.
    Volunteers resurfacing footpath at Ullswater during "Fix The Fells Day".

    Volunteers from Stickle Barn involved with Himalayan balsam control at Elterwater.

  • Monday 05 December

    16:01 05 December 2016
    By Roland Wicksteed, Dave Jackson, Dave Almond, James Archer, Neil Winder, Ben Knipe

    On the way to do some tree planting... (Wednesday November 30th) on land belonging to The Howe Farm at Troutbeck, above Windermere,... this fallen beech across the footpath was discovered!
    The tree had come down from National Trust land in the recent high winds partially blocking the footpath with the crown resting on a neighbour's property. The next day, Liam, forester ranger based at St. Catherines, can be seen here working out the best approach to deal with the tree.
    Jess from High Close who like Liam is also qualified to do large tree felling was able to give assistance at very short notice. With warning signs set up and a lookout in place to warn walkers using the footpath work began.
    In this image Jess has reduced the crown of the tree. Most of the wood will be cross cut and used for firewood after seasoning in the NT Footprint wood-burner.
    Here Liam  is cutting more sections out of the tree trunk to further reduce its weight prior to "felling" it..
    Above and below.
    Working down to where the tree is resting on the bank.
    A robin popped by to see what was going on.
    Finally the main trunk was winched to the side of the path and out of the way, ready to be dealt with later.
    Jess kindly volunteered to do the winching.
    Liam and Jess...what a team!
    The first of many loads of wood on the way to St. Catherine's with the wood-burner as the final destination.

News from Roland Wicksteed

Photo of Roland Wicksteed

Ranger. It is a privilege to live and work in this beautiful area; it is unique. I am based at Windermere and Troutbeck. My favourite work is drystone walling and hedgelaying. I enjoy instructing Working Holiday Groups in both of these traditional crafts. Part of my work involves keeping the numbers of "invasive non native species" down as much as possible. I also continue to work on a project, the aim of which is to increase the numbers of the scarce touch me not balsam plants,(yellow flowering plants in the image's background!) which the rare netted carpet moth depends upon for its survival. The numbers of moths and plants are mainly restricted to a few small sites in The Lake District.