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

The Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership Scheme is nearing completion after four years, delivering diverse projects across an area covering Tebay to Great Asby and Kirkby Stephen. It has developed a range of free resource and guides that it is now offering to local tourism businesses, residents and visitors to the Westmorland Dales.  

Funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, it has launched a new information pack containing beautifully illustrated A5 booklets. They provide information on the geology of the area, such as the iconic Great Asby Scar National Nature Reserve and stories of local legends, retold by master storyteller Emily Hennessey, featuring illustrations from local primary school children. There is also a guide to the farming landscape and local features such as shielings and dry stone walls, and an introduction to the area’s fascinating and diverse churches; a great starting point for exploring some wonderful Westmorland Dales villages. 

You can pick up your free information packs at Tourist Information Centres (TICs) in Appleby, Kirkby Stephen, Penrith and Sedbergh. They can also be collected from the Scheme’s base in Tebay until the end of November 2023. Email [email protected]  to arrange collection. 

From 1st December they will be available only to purchase, including via the Yorkshire Dales online shop: https://retail.yorkshiredales.org.uk/

Amanda Walters, Interpretation Officer for the Westmorland Dales Scheme, said:  

“We have a fantastic range of resources in print and online that celebrate the local history, nature, traditions and character of this area, and we hope will encourage people to spend time discovering ‘the Dales you don’t know’! Please do pick up a free pack or alternatively, visit our website for more information about the area. 

“You can also access guided walk and village-based walk information exploring the geology, the landscape and the history of routeways and travel through the Westmorland Dales, created as part of our Scheme’s ‘A Way Through’ project and available at www.yorkshiredales.org.uk/a-way-through .  

“The Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority (YDNPA) also has lots of short walks on its website and Cumbria GeoConservation provides GeoTrail routes and locations around the Westmorland Dales, see www.cbdc.org.uk

The ‘A Way Through’ project was delivered by the Westmorland Dales Scheme in partnership with the YDNPA tourism team. The team has created a ‘Sense of Place’ toolkit encouraging tourism businesses to capitalise on the distinctive features of the area, and shared research with visitors and locals to provide a better understanding of why visitors love the Westmorland Dales. See https://www.yorkshiredales.org.uk/our-toolkits-and-handbooks for more information.