214 pupils from Keswick School to spend the day with National Trust Rangers

The whole of Keswick School’s Year 7 will spend the day working alongside members of staff and National Trust Rangers near Derwent Water, in Borrowdale and Newlands Valley.

A range of six different activities have been assigned to seven Forms that encompass practical activities involving their immediate environment; educational talks and walks as well as some fun thrown in.  The idea came together when the Head teacher, Simon Jackson, asked Ian Turnbull, the School’s sports co-ordinator, to put together a day for the Year 7’s.  As the school already has an excellent relationship with the National Trust, it seemed a great idea to approach them to run the day.  Along with Helen Helm at school and Roy Henderson of the Trust, activities were put together that include working and visiting Force Crag Mine in the Newlands Valley and visiting Derwent Island to help cut back the foliage (and maybe have a fire with marshmallows too!).  Other adventures involve a trip across the lake on a Keswick Launch boat, kindly donated by the Company; taking the open top bus along the Borrowdale valley to Seatoller to install small enclosures to allow the National Trust to monitor what wildflowers and vegetation we have at Thorneythwaite Farm, with Stagecoach giving the school a concession on fares on the way out and Furnesses Buses transporting the pupils back at the end of the day for free.

As an ex-National Trust employee, Helen is keen to give pupils every opportunity to work with the Rangers:  “having worked for and with the Trust over the last few years, I have seen the benefits it brings to children of all ages.  To be able to, in some cases for the first time, introduce pupils to the delights and wonder of the Lake District National Park and give them an opportunity to work in such an environment with dedicated professionals from the Trust, is both exciting and worthwhile”.

National Trust Ranger Roy Henderson has worked with Ian and Helen on a number of occasions and also takes Year 10 Keswick School pupils each year as part of the Work Experience Week in June.  As Roy explained:  “Giving children of many backgrounds the chance to take part in different activities within the scope of the National Trust opens their minds to possibilities they may not have thought about before.  No doubt at least one of these young people will consider a job outdoors and this could be the turning point for them.  Dan Simpson, part of the Rangers team did work experience with me when he was a pupil at Keswick School and this inspired him to work hard and become part of the National Trust.”

Should the weather be exceptionally poor on Wednesday 12th July, the event will take be re-scheduled to take place on Friday 14th July.