Volunteers and landowners are playing a key part in helping the North York Moors National Park and English Heritage to save the park’s 840 historic monuments.
And now, English Heritage has said it wants to extends its funding for a management scheme beyond March next year because of its success.
A new report says extensive bracken and scrub control has been carried out at 16 monuments, with 41 historic environment volunteers working on a catalogue of them.
Today of the 840 scheduled monuments in the park, 99 are officially labelled as being at risk with 240 described as being “vulnerable” and 501 at low or no risk, says Mags Waughman, the park’s monument management scheme officer.
She said the scheme had been set up five years ago as a partnership between English Heritage and the park authority to reduce the risk status of its scheduled monuments.
A grant of £100,000 was provided over three years..
“The scheme is having a huge positive impact on the large number of scheduled monuments in the National Park, in terms of improving their condition and management, and in increasing the potential for visitor enjoyment,” said Ms Waughman.
However the grant was doubled to £200,000 to increase the number on the “at risk” register and tackle threats caused by coastal erosion, arable ploughing and badger activity.
Among monuments treated for bracken control has been a Bronze Age burial mound at Danby Beacon, Allan Tofts, Goathland and a large group of medieval pillow mounds at Douthwaite near Kirkbymoorside.
Thanks to volunteers, some 184 monuments have been actioned, and a new volunteer project is being carried out to monitor potentially damaging effects by badgers.
“In the past two years, 43 monuments have either been removed from the Heritage at Risk register, or are expected to be,” said Ms Waughman.
She added that the park authority is to put forward plans to continue the work.