New community volunteer days announced for Marsden Moor

Weekend volunteer days will give more people the chance to look after Marsden Moor.

A series of community volunteer days have been announced by the National Trust on Marsden Moor. It’s after a number of successful of moss planting days held by the ranger team last year, which saw over 200 people sign up to help the moors recover from fire damage.

The new volunteer days will take place every month on a weekend, allowing people who work during the week to get involved with some of the tasks the National Trust rangers carry out. As well as more moss planting, work will also include footpath repairs, removing invasive rhododendron and planting species like cotton grass.

National Trust Area Ranger for Marsden Moor, Ian Dowson, said, “We were overwhelmed by the number of people who wanted to help us with our moss planting days last year. So many people said they’d love to get involved with more of our conservation work but couldn’t join us during the week due to work or school commitments. Our new volunteer days will give people a chance to get hands-on and help us look after this special place.”

National Trust Countryside Manager, Rosie Holdsworth, said, “Volunteers are a vital part of the team at Marsden Moor. From those that help our rangers and guided walk leaders, to our woodwork and plant sale volunteers and community fire watch, every one of them is helping us look after Marsden Moor. We want to inspire the next generation to get involved with looking after nature, and these new weekend volunteer days are a great way to get started.”

Ian Dowson continues; “Much of the conservation work we do is all about restoring the peat, reducing flood and fire risk and encouraging greater biodiversity. Every task that our volunteers do on the hill is helping us look after nature and heal climate harm.”

In autumn 2021, eight community sphagnum moss planting days were held over a number of weekends. Volunteers planted a total of 50,000 moss plants, including on areas which had been damaged during a moorland fire in April 2021.

The first weekend volunteer day will be on 29 January and will focus on removing invasive, non-native rhododendron in the Wessenden Valley. This helps reduce erosion and soil damage and encourages native species to grow instead.

To sign up and to find out more details about the event, please visit; https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/marsden-moor-estate/

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