Volunteering on the North York Moors

People who volunteer with the North York Moors National Park Authority, Howardian Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and North Yorkshire County Council joined forces this week to complete a ‘supertask’ to celebrate Volunteers Week 2010.

Volunteers with the North York Moors National Park, Howardian Hills AONB and North Yorkshire County Council

Volunteers with the North York Moors National Park, Howardian Hills AONB and North Yorkshire County Council

The group met at Sutton Bank National Park Centre and spent the morning removing conifer brash (typically branches, needles and the tops of trees) from an area that the National Park Authority is reverting back to heathland.

Removal of the brash will encourage native heathland plants such as heather, bilberry and crowberry to regenerate.

Long scale improvements

In the afternoon, Senior Ranger Simon Bassindale led the group on a walk along the Cleveland Way National Trail to illustrate how the morning’s work links in to larger scale landscape improvement work being carried out nearby.

The National Park Authority is working with the Forestry Commission to remove conifers and improve the area’s biodiversity by allowing broadleaf native woodland to flourish.

Jo Leckenby, the National Park Authority’s Volunteer Service Assistant, said:

“The day provided a great opportunity for those who dedicate their spare time to caring for North Yorkshire’s countryside to get together and swap stories.

Volunteering is great way to meet new people, keep fit and discover different parts of North Yorkshire – with some of the best scenery in the country, the office isn’t bad either!

For the National Park Authority, AONB and County Council, the work our volunteers do is invaluable in enabling us to carry out access and improvement work that we simply wouldn’t have the time or money to otherwise do.”

For more information on volunteering people can contact:

North York Moors National Park Authority: tel 01439 770657 or email j.leckenby@northyorkmoors-npa.gov.uk

Howardian Hills AONB: tel: 0845 034 9495 or email info@howardianhills.org.uk

North Yorkshire County Council: tel: 01609 532435 or email countryside.volunteers@northyorks.gov.uk

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