Chris Myers supports our campaign to save hay meadows

Last Wednesday YDMT, with the help of TV presenter and Garden Designer Chris Myers, launched the Hay Time appeal in a bid to save one of the most iconic and threatened habitats in Britain – wildflower hay meadows.

Channel 4's Chris Myers helps to launch the Hay Time appeal

Channel 4’s Chris Myers joins pupils from Christ Church Primary School to help us launch an appeal to save threatened hay meadows in the Dales.

You may have already heard about the work we’ve done to restore hay meadows in the Yorkshire Dales and other areas like the Forest of Bowland. With the help of local farmers we’ve made significant progress, adding locally harvested wildflower seeds to 300 hectares of degraded meadows.

Funding for this vital work will soon run out, and much more still needs to be done to protect the remaining species-rich hay meadows before it’s too late. 

The Hay Time appeal aims to raise £150,000 to fund a three year campaign to safeguard meadows in the Yorkshire Dales and the Forest of Bowland, to restore their botanical diversity and to raise awareness about the importance of this precious habitat.

Last Wednesday was our big launch. Garden Designer Chris Myers, who you may recognise from the Channel 4 series Wild Things, kindly lent his support for the appeal by speaking at the event, posing for countless photos, giving press interviews, and patiently following the direction of Dave our cameraman to achieve the perfect ‘piece to camera’! … THANK YOU Chris!

Help save our species-rich meadows before they disappear

YDMT’s Hay Time Project Manager Don Gamble chats to Chris Myers about the importance of hay meadows

Talking about his passion for hay meadows in the Dales, Chris said:

Having spent the last few years giving the nation a taste of Yorkshire through my exhibition show gardens, I came to realise how lucky I am to have inspirational wildflower hay meadows on my doorstep here in the Yorkshire Dales. Making a donation to the Hay Time Appeal will enable YDMT to protect and restore these beautiful and iconic meadows in the Dales which are home to rare species of flower like wood crane’s-bill and endangered animals like the moss carder bumblebee.

We’re also very grateful to the many supporters, business partners and members of the press who came to the event, and have supported the appeal. Not to mention pupils from Christ Church Primary School in Skipton, who enthusiastically demonstrated some of the educational activities we run through the project.

It costs as little as £1,000 to restore a meadow and protect the hundreds of species of wildlife it supports. Even a small donation to the Hay Time Appeal can make a big difference to the future of our meadows. Please donate now by visiting, or call us on 015242 51002.

Thank you

One hay meadow can support up to 120 species of plants, please help us save them

Wood crane’s bill – one of the many endangered species of wildflower found in hay meadows in the Dales.


Patchwork Meadow

The charity Plantlife are asking people to submit individual squares of patchwork inspired by Britain’s wild plants and flowers, to help create a giant patchwork ‘meadow’ celebrating our extraordinary floral heritage.  Here at YDMT we’re passionate about protecting and restoring the scarce upland wildflower hay meadows of the Yorkshire Dales, ensuring a brighter future for the rare plant species and threatened wildlife communities that they support.  So we were delighted to be involved in the Patchwork Meadow project – here’s our patch, made by YDMT fundraiser Sarah Brewer…
YDMT fundraiser Sarah with the patch

YDMT fundraiser Sarah with the patch

In the UK around 97% of meadows have been lost in the last 50 years. These complex habitats are teaming with up to 120 species of wildlife per field.  YDMT are working hard to protect and restore these precious meadows.  We’ve tackled almost 300 hectares so far!

Wood crane's-bill embroidery patch

Wood crane’s-bill embroidery patch

Wood crane’s-bill is one of the special plants found in the upland hay meadows of the Yorkshire Dales.  This tufted, hairy plant has mauve five-petalled flowers in June and July, followed by seed heads that end in a long pointed ‘beak’, hence the name ‘crane’s-bill’.  The square has been embroidered by hand using straight/running stiches and French knots.

Embroidery detail

Embroidery detail

If you’d like to submit a patch, you can find out more about the Patchwork Meadow here:

If you’d like to help us save our precious meadows, please make a donation to our Hay Time Appeal.
£10 = plant pots and compost for school children to grow meadow plants
£50 = one day of manual seed collection
£1,000 (or £100 per month for 10 months) = implement and monitor one meadow restoration scheme
Visit or call us on 015242 51002.  Thank you.

Slice of £413m charity donation

As regular readers of our blog will know, here at YDMT we are very happy and grateful to receive ongoing support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery, a charity lottery which donates 20 per cent of its profit to local charities… including us!

Novamedia/Postcode Lotteries, the parent company of People’s Postcode Lottery, has for the second year running, just been announced as the world’s third largest private charity donor, having awarded an amazing £413 million to charitable causes across the world in 2012.

So far, players of People’s Postcode Lottery have raised £301,332 for YDMT, helping us to support and deliver more projects than ever before, such as the conservation of threatened wildflower hay meadows and wetland habitats, the restoration of broadleaf woodlands, the provision of countryside management training programmes for young local people, and pioneering education and outreach work with local children as well as urban-based disadvantaged and disabled groups.

So, we’d like to say a special THANK YOU to all player of People’s Postcode Lottery for your vital support – we couldn’t do what we do without your support!

People's Postcode Lottery

Dales Photo Competition

Thanks to everyone that took part in our recent Facebook Photography Competition, run in conjunction with out friends at Dales Holiday Cottages.

The quality of the entries was extremely high, and judging was very tough.  But, after much deliberation,  ‘Aysgarth in Autumn’ by Tony Fyfield was chosen as the winning shot, scooping Tony a £250 Amazon voucher.  The winning photo will also feature in our 2014 charity calendar, along with several of the other beautiful images that were entered into the competition.

Aysgarth in Autumn by Tony Fyfield

The competition was the latest initiative in the ongoing partnership with Dales Holiday Cottages who has been a supporter of YDMT since 2006 and during this time has donated an incredible total of £10,400 to support our vital work caring for the landscape, environment and communities of the Yorkshire Dales.

The winning photo was judged by photographer Kerry Harrison who said: “I like that this photograph is a little bit of an unexpected view of a familiar subject. The foreground branches really lead the eye through the frame towards the stream and I also love the hazy back light. It also works well in terms of colour palette. With the recent trend of combining different exposures to create a high dynamic range (HDR) look I find this very natural shot to be refreshing. Lastly it reminds me a bit of traditional Japanese line drawings and paintings but whilst still being very English.”

Our 2014 charity calendar will be available to buy from August 2013 onwards.