Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership

The Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership Scheme finished in early 2024 with projects successfully delivered by a wide range of project partners, community groups and individuals. 
Over the coming months, we’ll be updating this site to highlight what’s been achieved, so please keep checking back.

Welcome …

… to the Westmorland Dales website.

The Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership Scheme aimed to unlock and reveal the hidden heritage of the Westmorland Dales, enabling more people to connect with, enjoy and benefit from this inspirational landscape. Specifically, its objectives were to:

  • Reveal the area’s hidden heritage.
  • Conserve what makes the area special.
  • Engage people in enjoying and benefitting from their heritage.
  • Sustain the benefits of the scheme in the long-term.

This was achieved through a programme of projects developed and delivered through the Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership, led by Friends of the Lake District and the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, and mainly funded through the National Lottery Heritage Fund. It ran over a five-year period from March 2019 to February 2024.

Here you can discover what makes the area so special, find out about the scheme’s projects, and view and download resources produced.

The Westmorland Dales

The Westmorland Dales is a beautiful area of Cumbria lying  north of the Howgill Fells and within the north-west corner of the Yorkshire Dales National Park. It stretches from Tebay in the south-west to Kirkby Stephen in the east and to Maulds Meaburn in the north-west. At its heart are the limestone fells above Orton and Asby, rich in natural and cultural heritage, and with magnificent views to the Pennines, the Howgills and the Lakeland fells. It drains into the Lune river catchment to the south and the Eden river catchment to the north. Relatively overlooked compared with its better-known neighbours, our projects have aimed to reveal its heritage for more to enjoy without detracting from its unique qualities. (Click on map for larger image)

Contact information

Friends of the Lake District
Murley Moss, Oxenholme Road, Kendal, Cumbria LA9 7SS
Main Telephone:  01539 720788
Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority
Yoredale, Bainbridge, Leyburn, North Yorkshire DL8 3EL
Main Telephone:  01969 652300

This project worked with local tourism businesses to promote the area’s heritage and to use that heritage to maximise the benefits to their businesses, mindful of the area’s distinct qualities, its Sense of Place, and sensitivities about attracting too many visitors.

Work with local tourism businesses in the Westmorland Dales and fringe areas to help them to promote and encourage enjoyment and understanding of the Westmorland Dales’ unique character and hidden heritage.

Project lead: Eden District Council

The Westmorland Dales is an undiscovered area of rolling fells and limestone pavement with pretty villages dotting the landscape.  There is so much for visitors to discover. 

The gateway to the Westmorland Dales is the bustling little market town of Kirkby Stephen with its array of independent shops, cafes and restaurants. Then there is Orton, a lovely village at the base of the fells with a great village shop, pub, café and Kennedy’s Chocolate Shop.  In Ravenstonedale there are two pubs the Black Swan and Kings Head or the nearby Fat Lamb Inn or the village owned pub in Crosby Ravensworth, the Butchers Arms. A popular farmers market takes place in Orton on the second Saturday of each month selling local produce. 

Scenic attractions include the remote Mallerstang valley with Wild Boar Fell dominating the skyline and the atmospheric ruins of Pendragon Castle at its heart or the National Nature Reserve on Great Asby Fell or nearby Smardale viaduct. The area is also popular for long distance walking and cycle routes which converge here. There is Wainwright’s coast to coast walk, the Lady Anne’s Way and the Lakes and Dales Loop. 

Tourism businesses have no resources and often little knowledge to share with visitors, something which this project will address, improving the visitor experience. 


  • To work with local businesses to promote and encourage enjoyment of the Westmorland Dales’ unique character and hidden heritage.
  • To encourage people of all levels of ability and interest to be able to appreciate and be inspired by the landscapes of the area.