The Friends of Blencathra returns £166,426 to donors

Blencathra was put up for sale to meet an inheritance tax bill. Credit: ITV Border

A charity set up to buy a Lake District fell has returned more than £160,000 to its donors.

The Friends of Blencathra was set up after the 2,000-acre mountain was put on the market with a guide price of £1.75 million, in May 2014, by landowner Lord Lonsdale.

Concerns were raised with the government's Charity Commission when the mountain was withdrawn from the market in 2016, and there was confusion as to whether money would be returned to donors.

The Commission has now released a report revealing details about its investigation into the charity.

It shows that The Friends of Blencathra has now returned £166,426 of donations, minus a £6 admin charge per donation.

A further £52,734 will be distributed to five local groups: Keswick Mountain Rescue Team, Fix the Fells, Friends of the Lake District, Cumbria Wildlife Trust, Mountain Heritage Trust.

The charity also received disclaim notifications totalling £21,013.

Donors who gave money or other property are still entitled to claim it back, as long as they do so by 2 April 2018.