Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership

The Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership Scheme ran from March 2019 to February 2024. Its vision was to unlock and reveal the hidden heritage of the Westmorland Dales, enabling more people to connect with, enjoy and benefit from this inspirational landscape. 

Download the Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership Scheme Summary Report for an overview of the Scheme's successes.


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

Sit back, close your eyes, slow down and experience a sound tour of the Westmorland Dales through a mosaic of sounds recorded at various locations by sound artist, Dan Fox. A mysterious and evocative medley of traditional music, local voices and sounds of the countryside. 

The recording was commissioned by the Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership Scheme, funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund with the aim of revealing the hidden heritage of the Westmorland Dales. 

The work forms part of a project employing a variety of media to engage local people and visitors in understanding and appreciating what makes the area so special. 

Amanda Walters, Interpretation Officer with the Westmorland Dales scheme, 

“I hope this mosaic of sounds will increase peoples’ understanding of typical Westmorland Dales characteristics, and tempt them to find out more about the Westmorland Dales for themselves. By employing the talents of local artists like Dan Fox, we hope to provide people with different ways of accessing and immersing themselves in the Westmorland Dales and its rich natural and cultural heritage. 

“Listening to this blend of sounds is quite a mindful experience, encouraging you to slow down and picture places and people in your mind. By connecting with the global aporee sound map, international audiences can explore sounds from across our local area and really get a sense of place.” 

From the sonorous tones of the St Lawrence Church organ in Crosby Ravensworth, to bird calls on the windy upland commons, nostalgic snatches of local poetry read by local farmers, performances from local music groups and the sound of steam trains dashing through the area, the sound tour provides listeners with a fascinating insight into the Westmorland Dales. 

Step into a Westmorland Dales farm and imagine what it would be like to make a living from working the land. Swoop beneath bridges under the M6 where river and farmlife meet below the boom of passing motor traffic. Experience the eerie sounds of wind in the railings on Smardale Gill viaduct, lively streams and the buzzing of busy pollinators - but watch out for a low-flying jet coming through!

Press play to journey through the Westmorland Dales...

Full length sound recordings from specific locations have also been added to the ‘Aporee Global Sound’ map, a global collection of unedited field recordings, from actual sites and situations, enabling you to take a location-led tour of the Westmorland Dales. Listen at this link> 

Amanda Walters said, 

“The sound tour was made possible because of the generosity of many local contributors, who all helped enable the amazing diversity of sounds captured. Also Dan Fox, of Sound Intervention, for supplying the technical and creative skills needed (and long days in the field!).”