A walking group has raised £500 to help care for the mountains they love so much.
The Nuclear Striders – a group of walking friends with connections to the nuclear industry on the West Coast – have collected the cash for Fix the Fells, the upland path repair partnership that cares for the beautiful fells of the Lake District.
Members donated £2 per walk over the past year and reached their fundraising milestone in a bid to “give something back”.
Norman McPhail, a member of the walking group, said: “The idea for this voluntary subscription came about last year, when we were out in the wonderful Lake District and realised we wanted to give something back to help protect this precious environment”.
“Our willing members wanted to support Fix the Fells to help maintain the infrastructure of the mountains we all enjoy.
“£2 a week isn’t a lot for each individual and over time it added up to the handsome sum of £500, which are proud to have donated to Fix the Fells.”
Mr McPhail added that the Nuclear Striders, which was set up 30 years ago by a group of workers in the nuclear industry at Chapelcross and Sellafield, would like to encourage other walking groups to follow in their footsteps and support the landscapes.
“If other walking groups followed a similar model, we could have a big, positive impact on the Lake District fells”, he said.
Joanne Backshall, programme manager of Fix the Fells, said: “We are incredibly grateful to the Nuclear Striders for supporting Fix the Fells.
“It is great to hear about walkers thinking about their impact on the landscape and putting something back to help protect the stunning Lake District fells for future generations to enjoy.”
Sarah Swindley, director of the Lake District Foundation, the fundraising partner of Fix the Fells, added: “The Nuclear Striders have created a fantastic model for supporting the mountain environment they love so much.
“We would encourage other walking groups and users of the fells to do the same – every little helps.”
A sub-group of the Nuclear Striders received media coverage last year (2016) when they devised a unique long distance walking route to mark the 250th anniversary of the birth of John Dalton, a local celebrated son famed for developing atomic theory, and have published an associated guidebook and created an associated website at www.johndaltonway.com.
The 45km John Dalton Way, which can be divided into five stages, starts beside the history wall in Kings Arms Lane, Cockermouth, where there is a board about Dalton. It passes through villages, including Eaglesfield, where he was born. It goes past Calder Hall, the first commercial atomic power station, and ends in Seascale.