Northwich and Rural North

Talking West Cheshire

Sandstone Ridge Trust now has Charity status

20 January 2012

The Sandstone Ridge Trust has been approved for charitable status by the Charity Commission.

The new charitable organisation has been set up to protect and enhance the wildlife habitats and historic heritage on and around Cheshire's Sandstone Ridge. The Ridge stretches from Frodsham and Helsby in the north part of Cheshire West and Chester down to Bickerton Village in the south of the Borough.

A group of six voluntary Trustees have worked together with the support of officers from Cheshire West and Chester Council over the last 18 months to build on the work of the Heritage Lottery Funded Habitats and Hillforts Programme. The landscape partnership scheme delivered by a number of organisations enabled a wide range of activities to take place over the last three years.

These have included archaeological digs on the six iron age hillforts of the Ridge, a replica iron age round house built in Burwardsley, educational workshops with schools about nature conservation and archaeology, community events, 'high-tech' analyses of the landscape using airborne laser scanning (LiDAR), and theatre productions about the history of the Sandstone Ridge.

The Heritage Lottery Fund agreed to extend the project for another year but is very keen for it to leave a legacy which has led to the development of The Sandstone Ridge Trust.

This is dedicated to continuing some of the work of the Habitats and Hillforts project but also looking for new opportunities and funding sources to deliver activities that will protect and enhance the natural habitats and historical heritage of the Ridge.

Said Trust Member, Councillor Eleanor Johnson: “The Trustees of the Sandstone Ridge Trust are keen to build on the work that the Habitats and Hillforts programme has delivered so successfully by protecting and enhancing the natural and historic environment; improving public understanding and knowledge of the area and improving access to the beautiful Sandstone Ridge landscape.

“The Trustees are also keen to encourage volunteers from the local area who are interested in nature conservation and or heritage in Cheshire to come forward with ideas for activities, to get involved with what's on or to be kept informed of future opportunities.”

For more information and volunteering, visit the Habitats and Hillforts website.

Sandstone Ridge Trust

Photo: Pictured Left to right - trustees Andrew Deadman, Councillor Eleanor Johnson, Stewart Ainsworth and David Joyce. Other Trustees include Councillor Ralph Oultram and John Heselwood