Walkers can add a fascinating new dimension to their experience of two of the Peak District’s most dramatic and iconic locations – Bleaklow and Black Hill – with two new Audio Trails created by Moors for the Future Partnership, experts in moorland restoration. The Trails can be downloaded onto iPods, MP3 Players or mobile phones and listened to as walkers follow the spectacular routes using a map.
Funded by MoorLIFE, an EU LIFE+ project, the Trails offer a lively soundtrack featuring birdsong, natural and social history and folklore. They also provide an insight into conservation works currently being undertaken by Moors for the Future Partnership.
Large swathes of Peak District and South Pennine upland have suffered damage as a result of wildfires and 150 years of industrial pollution and the Trail routes skirt a number of locations where major landscape scale restoration works are underway to help save our moors. Much of the land covered by the new Trails is important for gathering drinking water and is owned by MoorLIFE partner United Utilities.
The 9-mile Black Hill route takes walkers past Laddow Rocks and the soundtrack incorporates information about flora and fauna and examples of birdsong to listen out for. The Bleaklow Trail takes in Torside Castle and Bleaklow Head, with lively historical background about the construction of the Woodhead railway line and tunnel and their effect on the landscape.
Louise Turner, Information Officer for Moors for the Future Partnership says:
“We were the first in the UK to create Audio Trails for the countryside and they’ve proved hugely successful. Our two new Trails are a fantastic way of getting close to one of the UK’s most dramatic landscapes – and of learning how essential the uplands are.
“Walkers should be aware that the upland terrain can be challenging, so suitable clothing – and good navigational skills – are essential.”
The two new Trails add to Moors for the Future’s growing family of countryside guides. All 15 Audio Trails are downloadable via the Moors for the Future website at www.moorsforthefuture.org.uk/audio-trails and will also soon be available on iTunes.
But of course, you don’t even have to be out and about to enjoy them. If you’re sitting at home in a comfortable armchair, listening to the Trails can bring a taste of the wild moors directly into your sitting room…
PHOTO: The cairn at Tooleyshaw Moss – one of the many dramatic locations that feature in Moors for the Future’s new Black Hill Audio Trail
MoorLIFE is a £5.5 million, EU Life+ project. Its aim is to protect active blanket bog by conserving bare and eroding peat in the South Pennines Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and Special Protection Area (SPA). It is co-funded by the
European Union’s Life+ Programme and delivered by the Moors for the Future Partnership. Partners in the MoorLIFE Project include the Environment Agency, Natural England, National Trust, Peak District National Park Authority, United Utilities and Yorkshire Water.
Healthy peat moors:
- provide good quality drinking water – 70% of our drinking water comes from these landscapes. Damaged peat erodes into the reservoirs so that water companies have to spend more money cleaning the water for consumption.
- provide a unique habitat for a wide range of wildlife.
- absorb and store carbon – peat is the single biggest store of carbon in the UK, storing the equivalent of 20 years of all UK CO2 emissions and keeping it out of the atmosphere.
- potentially help reduce the risk of flooding.
Media contact: Louise Turner, Information Officer, Moors for the Future Partnership. Tel: 01629 816585 Mob: 07818 596386 email: firstname.lastname@example.org or Debra Wilson, MoorLIFE Communications Officer Tel: 01629 816581 email@example.com
For more information about our moorland conservation and restoration techniques and Moors for the Future Partnership projects please visit our website www.moorsforthefuture.org.uk