Land Manager's Diary: Read it here>

On Thursday, Friends of the Lake District volunteers were back on our land at Mazonwath, adjoining our own Little Asby Common. It is positive we are still welcoming new people who want to learn the art of dry stone walling.

With the apprentices helping out as well we cracked on with several metres of wall, the stone continuing to be at either end of the sprectrum from huge to tiny with nothing in between! 

This may be the last time we are walling in the field as it currently is. We bought the three fields at Mazonwath in 2008 to help with the management of the common. Apart from the bottom field which provides a good habitat for breeding waders, there has not been much biodiversity and we have long wanted to enhance it but have struggled to find funding and also the soil conditions were not right.  

Working with our Westmorland Dales Scheme team and partner Cumbria Wildlife Trust, we are delighted that this opportunity has now come. We are very excited that the top field will be restored to upland hay meadow over the next few weeks.


Our contractor Dan of DB Contracts has been busy spraying off the thistles and nettles and shortly our grazier Thomas will take a hay cut. Meanwhile Claire, the Grassland Officer at the Wildlife Trust has been busy finding a donor site – some hay meadows nearby where they can harvest the seed from the meadows and then bring the seed to Mazonwath. They will prepare the ground with some harrowing and arrange the harvesting when the seed is ripe, and then it’s spreading on our land and immediate aftercare. We will then bring in a new grazing and management regime, much akin to the one we have at High Borrowdale.

It will be great for us to enhance this site and we really look forward to seeing the changes in the diversity of species present, birds and insects. It will also be interesting to compare it with our High Borrowdale meadows and spot the similarities and differences. Hopefully we can share some pictures of the work over the next few weeks, so watch this space….