Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership

The Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership Scheme aims to unlock and reveal the hidden heritage of the Westmorland Dales, enabling more people to connect with, enjoy and benefit from this inspirational landscape. Thanks to National Lottery players it has been supported by a grant from the Heritage Fund

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The Northern Viaduct Trust has launched an event to raise funds for repairs to Smardale Gill Viaduct. We have previously awarded of £5,000 towards repairs from our ‘Love Your Landscape’ grant scheme which funds small scale projects and works that help to connect people with the landscape or to conserve and enhance it.

The Trust still has a long way to go with its fundraising effort so we'd like to encourage people to support the cause and join its fundraising challenge of 14 Peaks for 14 Arches. A press release written by the Northern Viaduct Trust (NVT) with details about the challenge and how you can take part follows below.

Smardale Gill Viaduct stands in the Westmorland Dales near Kirkby Stephen, its 14 arches soaring majestically 90 feet above Scandal Beck. Sadly, this iconic monument to Victorian engineering could be closed to the public unless Eden Viaducts can raise the funds for essential repairs. Closure would mean walkers and visitors would no longer be able to use the permissive path across it.

Following a recent inspection by structural engineers, Eden Viaducts have been advised that water penetration from its deck has caused a good deal of damage to the structure. Urgent repairs are required to the viaduct’s surface to improve the drainage and make it water-tight to prevent further damage. Only when this is complete can the work start on much needed repairs to the stonework – at least 3 of the 15 stone piers require urgent attention as they are at risk of becoming unsafe.

Eden Viaducts still need to raise over £100,000 for the first phase of the repairs and are looking for people to help its fundraising efforts by accepting the #14Peaksfor14Arches challenge, covering 90 miles (for 90 feet) whilst doing so.

The challenge takes in some of the most popular fells in the areas surrounding Smardale Gill viaduct: Nine Standards Rigg, Wild Boar Fell, High Cup Nick, Smardale Fell, Tailbridge Hill, Great Asby Scar, Crosby Garrett Fell, Blease Fell, Murton Pike, High Seat on Mallerstang, Green Bell, Dufton Pike, Cross Fell and Little Fell.

People who, for whatever reason, cannot scale the 14 fells can still join in by covering 90 miles in 14 stages in their garden or high street, on an exercise bike or however they choose.  

You can take part in the fundraising challenge by clicking on the Start Fundraising button on the Eden Viaducts website SAVE SMARDALE GILL VIADUCT - JustGiving.  Then simply set up your fundraising page and ask your friends and family to join in by sponsoring you.  You can then keep your friends, family, and Eden Viaducts up to date with your progress by posting videos and pictures as you take on the challenge.  If you are signed-up to Strava, you can embed it on your fundraising page so we can all follow your progress on a map and cheer you on.