The first book about the Lake District as a World Heritage Site has just been published. Titled Hows and Knotts: A Guide to Lakeland Views the book explains why the Lake District received the World Heritage accolade from UNESCO by taking the reader to 22 viewpoints in the National Park and then describing features of interest and why they are there.
The book is the result of three years of research by author Guy Richardson, the former Head of Planning with Cumbria County Council. This included a huge year-long trek to visit all the topographical features with Norse derived names ‘how’ and ‘knott’ in the National Park with the aim of laying to rest some myths about their character and to identify the best viewpoints from which describe the landscape’s history.
Guy Richardson explained “ There is so much of interest in the landscapes of the Lake District that I wanted to find a way of encouraging people to look beyond the natural beauty of the views and see the fascinating stories of communities, individuals, events and controversies that have led to the landscape looking as it does today. Many people have a general awareness of this history, but taking readers to a viewpoint, sitting them down and then talking about the points of interest will, I hope, enable people to get a fuller and more satisfying appreciation of the landscape.”
Richard Leafe, Chief Executive of the Lake District National Park Authority which has supported the guide’s publication, said “The English Lake District World Heritage Site has multiple layers of history and inspiration. It has been, and needs to continue to be, a living, working landscape. Hows and Knotts successfully provides insight into this cultural landscape as seen from viewing points spread across the Lake District, including from the top of Gummer’s How, Windermere and Newtown Knott, Ravenglass. It provides a remarkable journey through the Lake District, and would be a valuable read for both residents and visitors. I am delighted to have supported the publication, particularly as Guy is kindly making regular donations to the Lake District Foundation from the sale of this book to help us manage this special place.”
Although the book, published by Libri Publications, is written on the assumption the reader is sitting at the viewpoint, it also caters for the armchair reader through wide panoramas of every view on the book’s website www.lakelandviews.uk which can be viewed on a tablet or other device.