Thorneythwaite, Borrowdale in the Lake District

Stunning sky and the light on the fells at Thorneythwaite

Thorneythwaite is a small (303 acres) hill farm in Borrowdale which we purchased in August 2016. We bought the land because of its conservation value, this means most of the valley is now in our care. Now we are better able to look after this special place, on behalf of the nation, for ever. In the last year we have been discovering just how special Thorneythwaite is and strengthening our relationship with the very important local and farming community.

This year we published Playing Our Part, a national strategy setting out our plans to tackle the decline in British wildlife. We've also published Looking after the Lakes – a specific response to unprecedented conservation challenges in the Lake District. Both describe how we are working in partnership with farmers to find a way to put nature at the heart of sustainable farming.

Here’s how we’re putting our principles into action at Thorneythwaite.

Discover the big questions we're facing

Hill farming with shepherd Joe at Thorneythwaite

National Trust farming adviser Neil Johnson shows how we’re working with the traditions of upland hill farming in the Lake District to help nature thrive at Thorneythwaite.


Slowing the flow of water at Thorneythwaite

National Trust water adviser John Malley shows what the study of the river at Thorneythwaite has revealed and how this presents us with a choice for the future of this special place.


The long view: change at Thorneythwaite

National Trust archaeologist Jamie Lund reveals how the landscape at Thorneythwaite has always changed in response to external influences and gives the long view on the pressures facing this small corner of Borrowdale today.


Rare lichens of Thorneythwaite's woodlands

We're working with lichenologist Ivan Day as he revisits two trees he surveyed over 30 years ago to see how the rare lichens at Thorneythwaite have survived over time.

Ranger repairing walls at Thorneythwaite

Behind the scenes 

We created a timeline for our first twelve months of our work at Thorneythwaite.

National Trust staff standing on high fells overlooking Thorneythwaite

Meet the team looking after Thorneythwaite 

Due to it's diversity we need many people helping to look after Thorneythwaite; meet the team involved here.