Cumbria Crack
Headlines

1,000 people apply for nine jobs with Fix the Fells

Fix the Fells

Nine job vacancies to work outdoors on the Lakeland fells this year have attracted almost 1,000 applications, including some from abroad.

The huge interest in the assistant ranger posts also saw more than 400 people chasing the three seasonal vacancies which were based in Keswick.

The National Trust jobs with the Lake District Fix the Fells organisation only run from April 1 to October 31 this year.

Seven are full-time and two are part-time. Two of the Keswick posts are full-time.

Joanne Backshall, Fix the Fells programme manager, said “We have had people apply from all walks of life and applications from people as far as Germany wanting to work in our beautiful fells.

“The posts were also advertised on Facebook and I was totally surprised to see 216,000 hits on the site.”

Applicants have come from all areas of the UK and abroad for the jobs offered through the National Trust. All involve hard physical work, maintaining and repairing some of the 700 most popular paths on the Lakeland fells.

National Trust assistant rangers work in four teams of five people, alongside the Lake District National Park Authority rangers and some 130 volunteers, many from the local area.

Apart from Keswick, the other jobs are based at Ambleside, Coniston and Wasdale.

From a total of 982 applicants, the Keswick posts attracted 402, Coniston 246, Ambleside 209 and Wasdale 125.

Fix the Fells and the partnership organisations now have the mammoth task of going through the applications to draw up a short-list for interview.

It is expected the posts will be filled ready for the successful applicants to begin their contracts on April 1.

Work carried out by rangers and volunteers who repair and maintain the mountain paths in the Lake District is funded from donations and partner organisations.

A combination of millions of pairs of walking boots, the weather and gradient means erosion is a constant problem. The work on paths reduces erosion scars and also helps protect the ecology and archaeological heritage of the landscape.

Since the early 1980s, the teams have evolved into a skilled workforce. Volunteers also play a major part in Fix the Fells.

They undertake regular patrols of all paths and provide a valuable workforce to tackle big and time-consuming jobs, freeing up the National Trust’s upland path teams to concentrate on more specialist work.

Fix the Fells has repaired more than 200 paths and there are now 351 totalling 640 kilometres or 400 miles identified for repairs, maintenance or monitoring. Many of the Wainwright routes have been added to the workload.

The number and priorities change over time as some paths erode more quickly.