Longlands Lake improvement work gets underway

11th December 2020 - Wild Rivers Catchment

Work on our three-year community project to improve Longlands Lake and the River Keekle near Cleator Moor is making progress, despite the challenges of Covid-19.

The three-year People on the Keekle project is funded by Sellafield Ltd and comprises two related strands of work: (1) inspiring local communities to get involved with the natural environment through events and improvements to Longlands Lake, and (2) improving water quality and habitats on the lower part of the River Keekle by working with farmers and landowners.

The project started in November 2019 and we’d planned to launch with a community event in April 2020, but lockdown sadly meant this couldn’t go ahead. We’ve spent the summer making a great start on works in the area and planning future community events that will take place when restrictions allow.

Work so far has included:

Project Office Karin Crofts gets to grips with some huge Japanese knotweed! (L) Himalayan balsam strimming (R)

We’ve also launched a local community newsletter about the project, Letters from Longlands , which will be distributed locally (in places such as GP surgeries) and online. To sign up to receive the newsletter by email, contact karin@westcumbriariverstrust.org

In the future we plan a wide range of family-friendly events at Longlands Lake (subject to COVID restrictions), including navigation skills and geocaching, balsam bashing, pond-dipping and building wildlife houses such as bird boxes. We’ll also be offering local schools free environmental education sessions and Forest Schools. In March we’ll be building willow hides and you can come along to learn how it’s done. Finally, you’ll see a lot more work on-the-ground, including creating more ponds and wetlands for wildlife, riverbank stabilisation to prevent erosion and repairs to angling platforms and improved access around the site. Watch this space!

For more information and to get involved, contact Karin on karin@westcumbriariverstrust.org or 07528 724077.