18 June 2007

Memorials in the Lake District

Email to the Lake District National Park, 29 April 2007:

I am writing to ask what your policy is as regards plaques, crosses and other memorials in the hills. I assume that you are against them. But what about existing 'famous' memorial stones?
Last time I looked a while back, there was a cross tucked away near the head of Haweswater. Should I report it to you for removal? There is a prominent cross high up on the way to Stony Cove Pike.
And there is a memorial pillar above Buckbarrow crag, Longsleddale.
There is a (what I think is a) boundary stone on top of Harter Fell (Mardale) - are these OK?
I worked previously in another case to ensure that someone removed a new plaque in the Haweswater area.
As you probably know, the John Muir Trust has cleared lots of memorials from the summit of Ben Nevis. There are applying for permission to set up a memorial garden: http://www.jmt.org/news.asp?s=2&cat=Latest%20News&nid=JMT-N10158 I think the newsletter also said that they were thinking of making a memorials web site.
The crucial policy is to band and remove any new plaques which will spoil the very thing that the dead person (or dog etc) appreciated.
A search of your web site only found brief mention of memorials:

Reply: 22 May 2007:
We do not allow new memorials on the fells on land that we own and we discourage them elsewhere.
Do please report any new ones that you find to us. I have forwarded your email to the ranger for the area to look into the ones you mentioned.
We do not have a policy of removing existing famous memorial stones.
Memorials have not been a problem here on the scale of that at Ben Nevis, which ultimately promoted their removal. As you saw on our website, if somebody asks us we promote donations to the Landscape Fund rather than specific items in the landscape.

Shirley Muir
Northern Countryside Team Leader
Lake District National Park Authority

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