Cumbria

Volunteers wanted to help maintain Keswick bike trails

The start to one of the mountain bike trails
Image caption Whinlatter Forest is home to the longest purpose-built bike trails in the Lake District

Volunteers are being sought to help maintain mountain bike trails in the Lake District.

The Friends of Whinlatter has been set up to provide regular maintenance to the assorted trails at Whinlatter Forest, near Keswick.

The Altura 19km (12 miles), and Quercus 7.5km (4.5 miles) bike trails were designed by Hugh Clixby.

They are the longest purpose-built mountain bike trails in the Lake District.

The Friends of Whinlatter has been formed by bringing together existing volunteer schemes based in the area, under the single new group.

Amanda Hancock, a ranger at Whinlatter, said: "As part of the Friends of Whinlatter, someone could expect to help maintain the various bike trails, path maintenance work on the walking trails and removal of invasive plant species found in the forest.

"Many volunteers come to us with a range of skills and we do offer training where needed".

The Masmill oak wood scheme has already benefited from the help of volunteers.

About 8,000 oak trees, grown from native acorns collected from the site have been planted to replace the non-native conifers.

These are helping to stabilise the soil and provide native habitat for wildlife.

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