Five-year plan to conserve the Lincolnshire Wolds
THE Lincolnshire Wolds are not just picturesque – the 216 square miles of hills and valleys running from south of the Humber are also where people live and work.
A new five-year management plan for the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) has just been rubber-stamped, which will see work continue to conserve the jewel in Lincolnshire's crown.
County Councillor Lewis Strange, chairman of the Wolds joint advisory committee, said one idea is to get more young people – from toddlers to teenagers – involved.
"There are 100,000 young people in Lincolnshire and the idea is to get as many of them as possible out into the Wolds for healthy walks," he said: "Once they have been and realised you can walk for miles in beautiful surroundings, they will want to come again.
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"Retired teachers whose subject was geography will be asked to volunteer to visit schools in winter to tell pupils about the flora and fauna of the Wolds and then in the spring, summer and autumn everyone can get out into the area.
"Most schools run trips to the dales and moors, but there is a wonderful educational resource right on our doorsteps."
The AONB is managed by the Lincolnshire Wolds Countryside Service on behalf of Lincolnshire County Council and district councils.
A plan must be in place to qualify for Defra grants.
One forthcoming scheme is the £100,000 Down Your Wold project which will see the countryside service map out the area from one end to the other, detailing trees, roads, bio-diversity, history, accommodation and places of interest for the public.
10 ways to enjoy the Lincolnshire Wolds
1. Red Hill nature reserve, Goulceby. Wildlife rich grasslands includes an old quarry with its famous red chalk. The reserve runs along the Goulceby to Raithby road, about a mile south-west of the Bluestone Heath Road. Parking is at the top end and east of the reserve. Visit www.lincstrust.org.uk/reserves
2. Hubbard’s Hills. Louth’s 40m deep, steep-sided chalk valley cut by glacier meltwater 40,000 years ago. Grassy hills and lawns, picnic areas, paddling stream and nature walks. Visit www.hubbardshills.co.uk
3. Viking Way. Footpath that runs 147 miles from the Humber Bridge in North Lincolnshire to Rutland. The route passes ancient Viking settlements.
4. Lincolnshire Wolds Railway. A steam railway from Ludborough to North Thoresby.
Somersby village. The birthplace of the Lincolnshire bard Alfred, Lord Tennyson, Somersby Rectory, is now a private house.
6. Cadwell Park. Motor racing circuit. nicknamed the Mini-Nürburgring.
7. Lincolnshire Wolds Walking Festival 2013, May 18 to June 2.
More than 100 walks to choose from for all abilities, including routes suitable for toddlers and pushchairs.
8. Claythorpe Watermill and Wildfowl Gardens, Claythorpe. Water mill with an “enchanting paradise of birds and animals”.
9. Bolingbroke Castle, Old Bolingbroke, Spilsby. Thirteenth century castle, the site of a decisive battle in Parliamentarian victory in the autumn of 1643 during the English Civil War.
10. Gunby Hall, Spilsby. Hall’s state rooms and gardens open to the public.