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Cumbria Wildlife Trust

Wildlife in Sacred Places project

The Wildlife in Sacred Places project is a three year project designed to help church communities survey their sacred places and put in place measures that encourage a greater diversity of wildlife. An important aspect of this work will be to ‘hunt’ for ancient trees and to record them as part of the national Ancient Tree Hunt.

Many churchyards are a remnant of old meadows and can be important refuges for old hay meadow flowers. They can also be the home to many of the county’s venerable yews. Here the trees have had the time and the space to grow and develop into magnificent focal points for the community.

The Project Officer, Alison Reed, would like to hear from as many people as possible who are interested in becoming a volunteer for this project.

If you would like to get involved as a volunteer please contact Alison: or telephone 01539 816300.

Nature Reserves

Cumbria has the greatest diversity of semi natural habitat of any county in England. Whilst it is well known for its lakes and mountains, the county also contains some of the best examples of limestone pavement, raised mire, sand and shingle habitats and un-improved calcareous and natural grassland in the country. Cumbria is also the stronghold for many animals and plants, including the red squirrel, the high brown fritillary butterfly, bird’s eye primrose and dark red helliborine.

Cumbria Wildlife Trust’s 40 nature reserves, covering more than 3,000 hectares, reflect this quality and diversity. The Trust exists to protect Cumbria’s wildlife and the management of these nature reserves is one of the means by which this aim is being achieved. Access to the nature reserves is integral to this process and the majority are open to the public.

Many of our reserves have a mix of woodland and mature trees, some of which could be classified as ancient or veteran. We are therefore keen to record these trees and gain a greater understanding of how we can protect these important landscape features.