Join our next webinar

Pennine PeatLIFE Webinar: UK Peatland Code Progress

Presented by Jenny Sharman from Pennine PeatLIFE, this webinar will provide a brief introduction to the UK Peatland Code – a voluntary standard for UK peatland projects looking to market the ecosystem benefits of restoration. It will focus on the Pennine PeatLIFE experience in the initial stages of registering and validating two of its Yorkshire Dales sites. This has resulted in the successful registration of one of England’s first ever Peatland Code sites.

Click here to register and join the webinar on December 10, 2018, 12 pm. Webinar ID:  611-589-563

Pennine PeatLIFE funders and partners attend site visit.

Pennine PeatLIFE funders and partners view restoration work on degraded blanket bog.

Pennine PeatLIFE lead partner North Pennines AONB Partnership hosted the project’s major funders to review the bare peat restoration work on Tynehead Fell rrstoraion work funders @EnvAgencyYNE @EnvAgencyNW @nwater_care & @YorkshireWater looking at bare #peat restoration in the @NorthPennAONB highlighting our landscape scale work across county boundaries of #Cumbria #Durham #Yorkshire and #Lancashire #penninepeatlife


EU investment package for nature

The European Commission has approved an investment package of €243 million from the EU budget for projects under the LIFE programme supporting nature, the environment and quality of life in Europe’s transition to a more sustainable and low-carbon future. Member States will benefit from quarter of a billion euros of investments in environment, nature and climate action.

LIFE programme press release link.

Peatland restoration experts share knowledge

Peatland specialists from a UK restoration project have visited their twinning partners in Finland on the second leg of a peatland expertise exchange.

Along with colleagues from the IUCN UK Peatland Programme and the Environment Agency, members of the Pennine PeatLIFE team joined Finnish partners from Hydrology LIFE to share world-leading knowledge and expertise. The twinning programme was set up by environmental network Eurosite.

Peat project memebers in Kauhaneva-Pohjankangas National Park © Jari Ilmonen

Peat project members in Kauhaneva-Pohjankangas National Park © Jari Ilmonen

Pennine PeatLIFE is an EU LIFE Programme project, restoring peatlands in the North Pennines AONB, the Yorkshire Dales and the Forest of Bowland AONB. It is co-financed by Environment Agency, Northumbrian Water, United Utilities and Yorkshire Water. During a four day visit the Pennine PeatLIFE team looked at how peatlands are restored in the different conditions further north. This followed a visit by Hydrology LIFE and the Eurosite network to the North Pennines AONB earlier in the year. The peat specialists from each country were keen to discover how differing restoration techniques could be applied on their home patch. In both legs of the exchange the Pennine PeatLIFE team demonstrated survey techniques using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs).

There are numerous benefits to the environment and to society of restoring damaged peatlands. They play a vital role in mitigating climate change through carbon storage, and also provide wildlife habitats, improve water quality and help to reduce the risk of flooding through slowing the flow.

Tim Thom, Peat Programme Manager at Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, said:

“Throughout this project we have been working with our international partners, and this has helped the teams in both countries to share good practice and learn from successful restoration work. We’d like to thank our hosts at Hydrology LIFE for their hospitality and for sharing their achievements with us.”

Tuomas Haapalehto, Metsähallitus Parks & Wildlife Finland Project Manager said:

“In our exchange visit to the North Pennines AONB earlier this year we learned a lot about the techniques used in the UK for peatland restoration. We were delighted to host the return leg of this visit and have been able to share the knowledge and success of our restoration projects here in Finland.”

Katie Aspray of the Environment Agency said:

“Pennine PeatLIFE is helping us towards the ambitions set out in the Government’s 25 Year Environment Plan, protecting peatlands as our largest carbon store and the vast range of other environmental and flood risk benefits that peat restoration brings.”

Launched in October 2017, the £6 million Pennine PeatLIFE project aims to restore a huge 1,300 hectares of bog - space enough for over 1,000 cricket matches to be held all at once. In addition to the ecosystem service benefits that restored peatlands bring to society, the project will spend the majority of the £6 million in the local economies of the North Pennines, Nidderdale and Forest of Bowland Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the Yorkshire Dales National Park over the course of its restoration work.

Glasson Moss volunteer day, 07/06/18, 11:00 to 15:00

Would you like to be involved in blanket bog restoration? It’s a beautiful and important habitat that helps to filter our drinking water; is home to amazing plants and animals; locks up carbon that would otherwise be released into the atmosphere; slows the flow of rainwater into our rivers and so can help manage flooding. Unfortunately, much of this habitat is badly eroded and we need your help to restore it.

Volunteers will be collecting seeds from two species of cottongrass; Eriophorum angustofolium and vaginatum. After collection, we will cultivate them in a nursey for transplantation at sites within the North Pennines AONB. Cottongrasses are important peat-forming species typical of upland bog habitats. They are characteristic of moorlands, with white-cottony heads that bloom during the summer months. Collecting viable seed sources will enable the reintroduction of cottongrass to degraded areas within the North Pennines AONB and improve blanket bog vegetation.

Glaston Moss meeting point, Crown copyright and database rights 2018, Ordnance Survey

Glaston Moss meeting point, Crown copyright and database rights 2018, Ordnance Survey

You’ll be collecting seeds at Glasson Moss, part of South Solway Mosses National Nature Reserve, located approximately 22km west of Carlisle, Cumbria. Parking is located near the reserve entrance between Kirkbride and Bowness-on-Solway. Parking is tight, if attending and possible please consider car sharing on the day to increase available parking space.

Glasson moss is situated in a boggy, exposed location meaning weather can change rapidly. Volunteers will need to dress appropriately in warm clothes and waterproofs, gloves and robust footwear. The event will be outdoors for all of the day so volunteers should bring packed lunch and drinks. Sun-cream and insect repellent are also recommended.

For additional information please call Christopher Watt on 01388 528801 or email (

How the Yorkshire iCASP is supporting partners tackling flooding and peatland restoration

Healthy peatland can play an important role in both flood risk reduction and carbon storage. This was the take home message for two Yorkshire MPs who took part in an event organised by IUCN UK Peat Programme on a Pennine PeatLIFE site in Bishopdale, which demonstrated work on natural flood management and peat restoration.

The enthusiasm of Rishi Sunak (Richmond) and Julian Sturdy (York Outer) is captured in this short (4’ 30”) film by the Yorkshire Integrated Catchment Solutions Programme (iCASP). The film focuses on partnership working for sharing knowledge and best practice. It also celebrates how academics and practitioners are working together through iCASP to use insights from previous research programmes to drive innovation and cost-effectiveness in current and future programmes of flood management and carbon storage to benefit Yorkshire communities.


Join our next webinar

Pennine PeatLIFE Webinar: Geospatial Analysis of Blanket Bog Habitats Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Technology

Since 2012 the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust has been using Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Technology to survey areas of degraded blanket bog habitats.

The work has been conducted across the mountains and foothills that comprise the low-rising Pennine mountain range in northern England. The high resolution imagery and Digital Surface Models (DSMs) generated from these surveys allows us to analyse and map blanket bogs in far greater detail than we previously could before.

This webinar will outline some of the methodologies that we have developed during this time and how they will be applied to Pennine PeatLIFE. This  includes  but  is  not  limited  to  the  automated mapping   of   erosion   features,   analysis of hydrology and geomorphology, creation of photorealistic 3D terrain models, the creation of cross sectional profiles of gully systems and the  3D  modelling  of  subsurface  peat  reserves. By  helping  us  to understand  and  quantify  erosion,  the  information  generated  from these  surveys  will  help  us  to  target  resources,  and  make  informed decisions on how  and where to carry out  restoration work in order protect and enhance these precious habitats.

Click here to register and join the webinar. Webinar ID: 215-481-035.


Hareden Fell Frozen - taken by UAV

Hareden Fell frozen pond – taken by UAV

The Sphagnum Trials

Sphagnum moss is an important peat-building component in upland bog systems. Many blanket bogs have lost a significant amount of Sphagnum coverage and it is essential to reintroduce the plant to re-vegetate our peatlands.

Sphagnum benefits:

  • capable of holding double its own weight in water
  • the lower parts of the plant accumulate over time in saturated conditions, leading to the production of peat
  • forms multi-coloured carpets, adding to the beautiful landscapes where they are found

Pennine PeatLIFE is trialling a number of methods of reintroducing Sphagnum, including:

  • planting plug plants grown under greenhouse conditions
  • spreading fragments, pellets or gel
  • harvesting and transplanting clumps by hand
  • spreading fragments by machine

Each site and method provides different challenges, and Pennine PeatLIFE will use the trials to determine the most suitable technique for each type of location.