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 Westmorland Dales and Cumbria Wildlife Trust teams have joined up with local photographer and filmmaker Jon Chappell to produce a series of short films designed to help you identify the most common meadow wildflowers. So if you don’t know your meadow crane’s-bill from your wood crane’s-bill, or your oxeye daisy from your pignut then these films are for you.

The Westmorland Dales is home to some of the best flower rich meadows and verges in Cumbria, with a stunning array of wildflowers on display in June and July in particular. But apart from our daily walks during lockdown we may have missed the chance to enjoy them and, if we did, may not be familiar with all of their names.

Detailed close-up footage of the wildflowers has been captured at locations near Ravenstonedale in the spectacular meadows of Bowberhead and Piper Hole farms. The work forms part of a project to conserve species-rich meadows, grasslands and verges; just one of many projects that we are delivering.

Christa Nelson from Cumbria Wildlife Trust,
“Nationally these meadows have declined by 97% over the last 50 years but here were working to conserve them for all to enjoy. We’ve been surveying meadows with volunteers and restoring them with local famers and landowners, but it’s great to be able to share that work more widely. You can read more about our work at Bowberhead farm on our website at: www.cumbriawildlifetrust.org.uk/news/trust-saves-rare-wildflower-hay-meadows-westmorland-dales”

Nicola Estill, our community engagement officer said,
“We were really disappointed that National Meadows Day couldn’t take place this year. So we thought, why not produce a series of films to capture all these wildflowers when they were at their best? Luckily, we had local talent at our disposal and called on Jon Chappell to work his magic!”

Photographer and filmmaker Jon Chappell,
“I have always enjoyed filming wildlife. I did a few jobs for the BBC Natural History Unit (NHU) and I’m fascinated by the behind-the-scenes sections of Blue Planet and other such epic nature shows. Filming flowers or animals in Cumbria involves the same technical challenges as filming for the NHU but it’s nice to be close to home.”
Jon Chappell has worked all over the world filming wildlife and landscapes but most recently he has decided to concentrate more on the local area. We feel very lucky to have this highly experienced camera man working on some of our projects so we asked him what it means to him to film his local landscapes? You can read his responses here...