National Icon Celebrates 30 Years with the National Trust
On 12 December 2012, it will be 30 years to the day that the National Trust took ownership of Kinder Scout.
Kinder Scout, the highest point in the Peak District, is loved by locals and visitors alike and attracts over 100,000 people a year. It is perhaps best known as the site of the Mass Trespass in 1932 but it is also an area of huge importance for wildlife as a National Nature Reserve.
The Kinder Plateau is characterised by large expanses of blanket bog (peat bog) but over the years this has been severely eroded by a mixture of air pollution, wild fires and other factors.
Since 1982 the Trust has undertaken a huge amount of conservation to reverse the effects of this damage. This has included collaborations with universities and other organisations to research and develop conservation techniques; investments have been made in specialised fire fighting equipment; and Trust rangers and estate teams have skilfully tackled problems such as moorland path erosion, fixed miles of drystone walls flanking Kinder as well as developing over 20 new woodlands through planting native broad leave trees.
Currently the Trust, supported by United Utilities and Natural England, is two-years into a five year, £2.5 million project to restore this iconic landscape.
Over 70 hectares (approx. 172 acres) of bare peat is being restored, using a range of techniques, including heather spreading, the planting of over 500,000 cotton grass plants and increasing sphagnum moss coverage by over 100%. Gully- blocking is also an essential part of this work. This slows the flow of water off the plateau when it rains and helps keep peat where it should be, on the top. This also improves the quality of water flowing into the reservoirs, helping reduce the need for increasing treatment.
A temporary 15 kilometre (9 mile) fence has been erected, with regular visitor access points, around the plateau to keep the area free from grazing animals and allow the newly planted vegetation the opportunity to get established, while maintaining open access to Kinder Scout for walkers and other visitors.
The nature of peat bog means it is capable of storing huge amounts of carbon. When these habitats are healthy, and peat is actively forming, they continue to increase the amount of carbon they store, so as well as being rare and threatened habitats, vitally important for a wealth of wildlife, peat bogs also have an important role to play in helping to combat climate change.
"Kinder is a truly special place," comments Tom Harman, Kinder Catchment Project Officer. "It played a major part in how we access open country in England and its wild and awe-inspiring scenery has influenced generations, and continues to do so.
The work of the Trust, both now and over the last 30 years, has prevented the loss of something incredibly important to both our heritage and future.
Temporary sheep-proof fence - As part of a £2.5 million, five year restoration project, we are planning to erect a fence around Kinder Scout. This fence is designed to keep sheep (not you) off the moorland and will speed up our important conservation work on the plateau. We aim to restore vast areas of the bare and degraded blanket peat landscape by gully-blocking, brash spreading and moorland revegetation work.
Kinder Scout Restoration Project
Temporary sheep-proof fence
- As part of a £2.5 million, five year restoration project, we are planning to erect a fence around Kinder Scout. This fence is designed to keep sheep (not you) off the moorland and will speed up our important conservation work on the plateau.
We aim to restore vast areas of the bare and degraded blanket peat landscape by gully-blocking, brash spreading and moorland revegetation work.