Recently, staff from landscape charity Friends of the Lake District travelled to woodland in the Rusland Valley to mark a very special occasion. They were celebrating the handover of ownership to the charity of two remarkable woodlands by one of its long standing members and supporters, David Archibald.
In 2017 David contacted the charity with the offer of a gift of two woods, Bull Coppice and Resp Haw Wood, running down the eastern side of the Rusland Valley. Further talks and visits to the woodlands with David since the initial offer have now culminated in the transfer of ownership to Friends of the Lake District.
The two woods form a sizeable block of ancient semi natural woodland, and they are a significant part of the character of the valley. The woods are a delightful mix of oak, birch, ash, small leaved lime, holly and other native species. The ground flora includes bluebells, dog’s mercury, primroses and wood sorrel.
Andrew Tate, Policy Officer at Friends of the Lake District said: “We’re delighted to add such magnificent woodland to our portfolio. We are proud that David saw Friends of the Lake District as an appropriate organisation in which to place his trust and privileged to be afforded the opportunity to care for and enhance these spectacular spaces.”
The woods include the presence of nationally important natural heritage features, geological and geomorphological features, wildlife and habitats. They are designated as being of outstanding scenic, historic and scientific interest and enjoy “open access”.
Friends of the Lake District already owns and manages woodlands in Eskdale, Ambleside, Grasmere and Staveley and its experience and sympathetic management of woodland properties will ensure a healthy future for the Rusland woods and that they remain in common ownership.