Groups and partnerships

Groups and partnerships

Small tortoiseshell butterfly © Amy Lewis

Working together for wildlife

Cumbria Wildlife Trust works in partnership with other organisations to achieve the best results for wildlife. We also support special interest groups, which are made up of volunteers and experts in a particular field.

Groups and partnerships

Cumbria Mammal group

The Cumbria Mammal Group has been set up with the objective of raising awareness of the county’s mammals and encouraging people to participate in monitoring and recording their presence.

The Cumbria Mammal group Facebook page is already populated with a number of posts, photographs and videos and new members are always welcome.

Follow Cumbria Mammal group on Facebook

As well as being a useful means of sharing observations from around Cumbria the Cumbria Mammal group is planning to run some specialist field meetings with a view to producing the mammal experts of tomorrow.

Cumbria is fortunate in possessing some real experts and if these individuals cast their minds back, they will recall that they were initially shown the ropes by someone willing to share their skills.

The demise of the old Mammals Group and the regional Badger Groups has created a vacuum in this educational area that this new Group intends to fill. 

Groups and partnerships

Cumbria Local Nature Partnership

Cumbria has an amazing range of landscapes and geology, supporting a rich and diverse wildlife. The Cumbria Local Nature Partnership promotes and supports our wildlife and is taking a lead on ‘Nature Recovery’ in Cumbria; ensuring nature is fully considered in local decisions for the benefit of nature, people and the economy.

Cumbria has an amazing range of landscapes and geology, supporting a diverse and rich wildlife. However, despite considerable amounts of work by land managers, and some great wildlife success stories, we continue to witness the decline of nature in Cumbria as climate change, development pressure, land management and modern day life impact on our natural environment. Once common species have become rare and wildlife habitats have been lost, degraded or fragmented. We rely on our natural systems to provide essentials such as food, clean air and water, and it also underpins the quality of our lives by supporting health, recreation and fulfilment.  However to do all of this effectively our natural environment needs to be well looked after and kept healthy. It is now an imperative not only to prevent further losses, but to work towards reversing the damage and declines. 'Nature Recovery' is needed - restoring and reinstating habitats and wildlife in such a way to ensure that we can sustain a healthy environment into the future. The government’s 25 Year Environment Plan and the draft Environment Bill 2020 show a commitment to recover nature, and tools are being put in place to help this change. 

Which organisations are involved in the Cumbria Local Nature Partnership?

Cumbria Local Nature Partnership consists of a wide range of organisations including:
•    statutory agencies
•    environmental organisations
•    local authorities, National Park Authorities and AONB
•    representatives of farming and landowning interests
•    research and educational institutions
•    businesses, voluntary organisations and community groups

Read more

The CLNP's vision for the environment of Cumbria is:

“Cumbria is a place where consideration for the environment informs every decision making process and where the environment is managed to provide a wide range of benefits for nature, people and the economy. In Cumbria nature’s role within the landscape is understood and valued by all”.

The Partnership’s Strategy also outlines four themes on which CLNP and others need to work in order to realise this vision.

The four key themes are:
1. Putting people at the heart of environmental policy;
2. Managing environmental impacts and growing the economy;
3. Adopting an integrated landscape approach to conservation on both land and at sea;
4. Improving knowledge and understanding of the environment.

Over the coming year the CLNP will be focusing its effort on driving forward ‘Nature Recovery’ in Cumbria, and in particular supporting the development of a Nature Recovery Network and the Local Nature Recovery Strategy.

Nature Recovery Network
The Cumbria Local Nature Partnership is leading on the identification of a Nature Recovery Network for Cumbria. It is essential that we restore our natural environment, bringing back habitats and species we have lost and ensuring that we pass on a healthy and vibrant natural environment, and the wildlife it supports, to future generations.

Although the Nature Recovery Network will become a physical network on the ground, with healthy habitats, rivers, lakes and coast, its vision and approach will be expressed and planned through a map.  Working across the partnership and with wider stakeholders we will consider and outline the needs of nature and natural systems both now and in the future. Working with those who have the ability to make it happen, including land managers and landowners, the planning system, local communities and businesses and potential investors,  we will design and map a Nature Recovery Network for Cumbria which will help everyone take action for nature in the most appropriate locations.

Local Nature Recovery Strategy
Defra has recently announced they are to fund and work with councils in five areas of England to test and develop the concept of Local Nature Recovery Strategies (LNRS).  It is exciting that Cumbria has been selected to act as one of these pilots and we are pleased that Cumbria County Council have accepted the role of ‘responsible authority’ for a Cumbria-wide LNRS approach.  As outlined in the Environment Bill 2020, and as confirmed by Defra in these pilots, Local Nature Partnerships are expected to play a core role in the development and implementation of LNRs. The Local Nature Partnership will be supporting the Council in its work and ensuring that we have a dynamic, forward-thinking and ambitious Local Nature Strategy for Cumbria.
More information?
If you would like to find out more about the CLNP and its work, please contact Paul Evans using the details below.

Contact: Paul Evans, Cumbria Local Nature Partnership Manager 
Telephone: 01539 816300
Email: Paul Evans

Cumbria Local Nature Partnership - A Partnership Vision for a Cumbria-Wide Nature Recovery Network

Cumbria local nature partnership environment strategy PDF

Cumbria local nature partnership summary document PDF

Groups and partnerships

Cumbria Peat Partnership (CPP)

The Cumbria Peat Partnership (CPP) is a practical delivery group, made up of 14 organisations from across Cumbria.

What is peatland restoration and why is it important?

What is the Cumbria Peat Partnership about? 

It brings stakeholders together to share knowledge, develop best practice and actively support the restoration, stewardship and the long-term future of the wide range of valuable peat habitats in Cumbria.

The Cumbria Peat Partnership will actively support the restoration and better stewardship of peat land habitats with the aim of delivering:

  • Flood Risk Management
  • Biodiversity, Water Resources
  • Water Quality
  • Carbon Storage
  • Water Framework Directive benefits

What are the key objectives of the Cumbria Peat Partnership?

The formation of the Cumbria Peat Partnership (CPP)  in spring 2012.  Its key objectives are that by 2020 we will:

  1. Seek to achieve favourable management conditions of 2020ha of Peat land habitat in Cumbria.
  2. Improve connectivity of Peat land habitats for the benefit of flagship species in Cumbria.

What work has been carried out so far?

Surveys are currently being carried out of potential restoration sites, following a detailed mapping exercise of the available peat habitat in the Lake District National Park and areas of high restoration potential.

This will help us to identify areas of erosion and help us to define where best to focus our resources.

Who is a member of the Cumbria Peat Partnership?

Representatives from the following organisations will form the membership of the partnership:

More information?

If you would like to find out more about the Cumbria Peat Partnership and its 
work please contact Neil Harnott (Senior Conservation Officer) at Cumbria Wildlife Trust. Telephone:  01539 816300
Email Neil Harnott

Cumbria Peat Partnership (CPP) terms of reference PDF

Groups and Partnerships

Cumbria Dark Skies

Friends of the Lake District are working to save Cumbria's dark skies

Find out more about the Cumbria Dark Skies project

Cumbria's dark skies allow us to see the natural wonder of the stars, but are also critical for the health wildlife and our own natural well-being. Sadly light pollution in Cumbria is increasing each year, threatening to obscure our view of the stars and blinding and confusing animals so they can’t feed or find a mate. Discover more about The Friends of the Lake District project to stop light pollution. 



Groups and partnerships

Vine House Farm partnership

Everyone should be able to experience the joy of wildlife in their every day lives. The easiest and most effective way to do this is to encourage wildlife close to home.

Find out more about our partnership with Vine House Farm

Our enduring partnership with Vine House Farm has inspired and enabled people to look after the wildlife in their garden for over ten years.

Feeding Vine House Farm bird seed, home grown on their wildlife friendly farm in Lincolnshire has enabled tens of thousands of people to experience the joy of wildlife in their gardens.

Groups and partnerships

Cumbria GeoConservation Group

Formerly known as the RIGS group, this special interest group of Cumbria Wildlife Trust designates and interprets Local Geological Sites, formerly known as RIGS.

Regionally Important Geological and Geomorphological Sites (RIGS) were originally designated as important places for geology and geomorphology outside statutorily protected land such as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).

This has changed and RIGS have become ‘Local Geological Sites’ (LGS) which, importantly, are recognised by local planning authorities; Cumbria GeoConservation gets consulted if any proposed development impinges on an LGS.

This is a means of safeguarding important Earth science and landscape features for future generations to enjoy.

Further information about local geology and a map showing the location of Local Geological Sites can be found on the CumbriaGeoConservation website

For all the Local Geological Sites that can be visited without seeking permission, 'Site Data Sheets' can be downloaded from the CumbriaGeoConservation website and for some sites there are non-technical leaflets to download.

Cumbria Biodiversity Action Plan (species updated list 2009) PDF

Groups and partnerships

Cumbria Beaver Group

The Cumbria Beaver Group is made up of Cumbria Wildlife Trust, RSPB, Lowther Estates and Eden Rivers Trust and is working in consultation with Natural England, the Environment Agency, United Utilities, Forestry England, the University of Cumbria and others. 

The aim of the group is to facilitate the well planned and managed reintroduction of beavers to Cumbria through the delivery and support of enclosed scientific beaver release trials, as well as community engagement and advocacy. 

  • Beavers are native to Britain but were wiped out in the 16th century, mainly due to hunting.
  • Beavers are completely vegetarian and do NOT eat fish.
  • Beavers can provide a range of environmental and socio-economic benefits. These include flood risk alleviation, improved water quality, habitat creation for other wildlife and increase revenue for the local economy through nature-based tourism. 
  • The proposed release schemes in Cumbria are enclosed scientific trials and will only take place if a license is granted and funding can be obtained. They are not for free roaming beavers so they will be unable to move into the wider surrounding countryside.
  • In the long term, the Cumbria Beaver Group would like to see beavers return to Cumbria. However, it is vital that any reintroduction is well planned, well managed and has the support of the local community.
Groups and Partnerships

Cumbria's Swift Groups

Cumbria has a number of community swift groups, working to protect and for the enjoyment of swifts. Groups monitor swifts and put up nest boxes.

Swift groups