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Visit the Dales


Dales Volunteer, Chris

How long have you been a volunteer?

I started my training as a Dales Volunteer in the autumn of 2008, becoming a fully trained 'DV' a year later.

Why did you want to become a volunteer?

Before starting my training I had joined one of the National Park Authority’s voluntary drystone walling teams. At the time the National Park Authority were looking to increase its number. This was because I was interested in learning how to build drystone walls. I became an official Dales Volunteer so that I could carry on with the drystone walling and undertake additional activities associated with the maintenance of the National Park.

What do you do as a volunteer?

Most of my time as a Dales Volunteer is spent repairing drystone walls as the walling team meet weekly. I also try to help with the maintenance of the footpaths by carrying out practical duties approximately once a month. I carry out access duties and take part in the annual surveys of the bridges and water crossings on the footpaths.

What do you enjoy about being a volunteer?

I enjoy being a Dales Volunteer as I like the work I carry out and the camaraderie with the other Volunteers. I also feel that I am helping to maintain the Dales for the enjoyment of others, both now and in the future.

What’s been your greatest achievement as a volunteer?

I think that my greatest achievement as a Volunteer has been taking part in the rebuilding of a drystone wall alongside part of the recently completed footpath across Whitber. It will be seen by so many walkers and the location and local environment made it a challenging exercise.

Where is your favourite place in the Yorkshire Dales National Park?

Having only lived in North Yorkshire for just over seven years, it is difficult for me to say that I have a favourite place in the Dales as I am still discovering new locations. However, as a Volunteer working in the south west region of the National Park, I find the view looking south from the top of Malham Cove very impressive. Plus there is always the chance of seeing peregrines flying around!

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