Friends of the Lake District was set up in 1934 to campaign to create a national park to protect the Lake District. Almost two decades of tireless campaigning later, the Lake District National Park was created by government in 1951, and the Yorkshire Dales followed in 1953.

In 2016, our long campaign to extend the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales National Parks to cover areas originally left out of the parks in 1951 came to fruition. The areas, to the north and west of the Yorkshire Dales and the east of the Lake District, covering the Howgill and Orton fells, and areas around Kirkby Lonsdale and Sizergh finally became part of the national parks on 1 August 2016, extending the parks by 188 square miles, meaning the parks now cover 1750 square miles of protected landscapes.

We continue to work in the new extension areas to enhance the environment, improve life for communities living there and increase opportunities for the public to access the landscape. Our new Westmorland Dales Hidden Landscapes project will form our work in the Asby and Orton area.