Friday, 21 October 2011

Lark Rise Farm And The CRT

Somewhere in my mind is a dream landscape. A landscape of small fields and thick hedges.  Of lush meadows lying in the valley bottoms and trees with their foliage nibbled off level with the ground by browsing cattle. Skylark song fills the sky while yellowhammers throng in the bushes and linnets peck on the ground for seeds. But in my dream this can be achieved in an economically and environmentally sustainable way in the modern world. Is it just a dream?

If it is a dream then it's one shared by an increasing number of country people. And it's a dream that the Countryside Restoration Trust is seeking to make a reality. I recently took a stroll along Bourn Brook and wandered around some of their land at Lark Rise Farm, in Barton, Cambridgeshire.

I started walking here last winter when a Great Grey Shrike took up residence for a few weeks. I never did catch up with the shrike but I saw enough other wild life to make my visits worthwhile. A Barn Owl was frequently seen patrolling the hedgerows and ditches, a fox crossed my path on a number of occasions and a Red Kite, still an uncommon sight in this part of the county, was also encountered.

I strongly advise anyone with any interest in the Trust to click on the link above to find out more about their work, but if you just want to share a little of the dream then here are some more pictures:

Take care.


  1. Wonderful post, John. These kinds of organizations are increasingly valuable as populations increase and pressure for development also increase. Without the efforts of groups such as the CRT, future generations will have lost a large part of their heritage. We are fortunate here on the Cumberland Plateau in that the the Nature Conservancy and the State of Tennessee have put together 193,000 acres of public lands for wildlife conservation and recreation. Those of us who are fortunate enough to live here enjoy frequent access. Jim

  2. This is a wonderful and nearly natural place. It must have been enjoyable strolling about.

  3. Great post. I've never heard of the CRT but it looks like something I'll be joining when funds allow! It's a very important and worthy cause.

  4. It's a few years since I last visited Lark Rise Farm but I do know how wonderful it is - it must be even better now than it was when I last saw it. What I remember most clearly is the number and variety of butterflies in the hegderows and the beautiful damsel flies on the little brook.I was one of the first members of the CRT when Robin Page first set it up and have been a member ever since. It's come a long way since then.

  5. Good Morning John,
    What lovely photographs. To my mind the English farming landscape, when it looks like this, is the most beautiful in the world... but I may be a bit biased! Jane x

  6. Thank you for your comments. In Britain there's no chance or inclination to have true wilderness areas like you have in less congested lands. However people have improved upon nature in some eyes and besides "there's nothing unnatural about people".


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