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

Children from Crosby Ravensworth, Great Asby, Orton, Shap, Tebay and Kirkby Stephen Primary Schools have been working with Cumbrian sound artist, Dan Fox, to record pieces of music made entirely from natural sounds collected on a 'sound walk' around their villages.

Listen to all of the sound creations here>

The collection of short compositions include the sounds of flowing and bubbling streams, birdsong and echoes, the rush of the wind through the trees, the knocking of branches, the vibrations from the twanging of a fence and the voices of children taking part.

The ‘Sound Explorer’ project is one of many forming the Westmorland Dales Landscape Partnership Scheme, which has been funded by a grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund with the aim to engage people in revealing, conserving, enjoying and sustaining the hidden heritage of the Westmorland Dales.

Class 2 pupils from Great Asby Primary School said:

“We learnt everything and anything can make sound. We were surprised at how quiet the garden ponds were and found twanging the metal fence really cool. Also who knew that grass can talk!”

During this unique group experience, Dan used industry standard, battery-powered location sound recording equipment linked via a wireless transmitter to each child wearing wireless headphones.

Different types of microphones were utilised to enable the group to listen to different aspects of the landscape. The sounds range from close-up sounds using hydrophones and contact microphones to a wider sonic image with boom microphones and a parabolic dish. The children’s favourite sounds were recorded during the walk, edited and mixed back in the classroom to create unique and immersive pieces of music.

The project closed with an online conference between all six of the schools involved, where the children got the opportunity to introduce and share their musical creations with each other. Dan was on hand to explain how the sounds in each piece were collected and how the children discovered the diversity of sounds.

Listen to all of the sound creations here>