Visitors to Rannerdale asked to 'respect the bluebells and each other'

Visitors to Rannerdale Valley are asked to "'respect the bluebells and respect each other" as lockdown restrictions on exercise are eased.

The delicate flowers, which come up in their thousands near Crummock Water, are a visual delight and rangers had hoped a lockdown reprieve would help undo damage of previous years where they have been trampled.

Now people can travel to exercise, a system has been put in place to keep the bluebells and their visitors safe during outbreak.

The National Trust has set up a one-way system so people can still enjoy the flowers while adhering to the Government's social distancing guidance.

But if trails get busy over the first weekend of eased lockdown rules, rangers say it could jeopardise the flowers.

Credit: ITV News
Credit: ITV News

Paul Delaney, who is a National Trust Ranger, said: "Given the nature of the site and the paths being so narrow, with some steep drops on the side, it is impossible for people to maintain social distancing if trails gets busy. They'll have to go off the path and therefore on top of the bluebells.

"Once people trample on the bluebells they crush the leaves and the leaves can't utilise photosynthesis to put the energy back into the bulb for next year and we lost that plant."

  • Paul Delaney, National Trust Ranger.

Paul hopes that if visitors use the one way system and don't go into the bluebells it could turn into a positive news story for next year

He said: "If people respect social distancing it gives the bluebells chance to recover and therefore next year they are going to be even more beautiful than they are this year.

"It is not up to us as the National Trust to enforce social distancing we can just plead on peoples better nature to respect the bluebells and respect each other."