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Kielder Water is a large artificial reservoir in Northumberland in North East England. It is the largest artificial lake in the United Kingdom by capacity and it is surrounded by Kielder Forest, the largest human-made woodland in Europe. It was planned in the late 1960s to satisfy an expected rise in demand for water to support a booming UK industrial economy. It was constructed between 1975 and 1981 by an AMEC/Balfour Beatty joint venture and was opened by Queen Elizabeth II in 1982. It took two years for the valley to fill with water completely once construction was completed.
Kielder Forest is a large forestry plantation in Northumberland, England, surrounding the reservoir Kielder Water. It is the largest man-made woodland in Europe.
Kielder is dominated by conifers. Sitka Spruce (Picea sitchensis) covers 75% of the planted area; this species thrives in the damp conditions afforded by northern Britain. Other species include Norway Spruce (Picea abies) and Lodgepole Pine (Pinus contorta), which cover 9% of the area each. The remainder is made up of Scots Pine (Pinus sylvestris), larch (Larix spp.), Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii), and broadleaves including birch (Betula spp.), Rowan (Sorbus aucuparia), cherry (Prunus spp.), oak (Quercus spp.), Beech (Fagus sylvatica), and willow (Salix spp.).
475,000 cubic metres of timber is harvested annually to supply local sawmilling, chipboard, pulp and wood fuel customers. Most of this volume comes from clearfelling areas; an increasing percentage however is sourced from stands harvested under continuous cover silviculture systems. Clear felled areas are replanted with a mix of coniferous and broadleaf tree species, opportunities are also taken to increase the proportion of open space and to improved the riparian habitat. As with all Forestry Commission woodlands timber is independently certified under the Forest Stewardship Council scheme.
The forest contains a number of sites of special scientific interest, primarily associated with the upland moorland environment. A programme of restoration of Border Mires is ongoing. The forest is one of the last English strongholds of the European red squirrel, and provides excellent habitat for many species of birds of prey. A large population of roe deer is actively managed. Many archaeological remains can be found within the forest and are an important cultural link to the often turbulent history of the area.
Kielder Castle Visitor Centre is an 18th century hunting lodge built by the Duke of Northumberland, which has been converted into a visitor and information centre. It is located on the edge of Kielder Village at the head of the River North Tyne valley.
The Castle serves as a hub for the growing number of recreational facilities on offer, walking and cycling trails, picnic areas and a forest drive.
The forest contains a number of art and architectural installations including a Skyspace designed by James Turrell and Wave Chamber, a camera obscura in a stone cairn by Chris Drury.
The forest also contains Kielder Observatory which is an astronomical observatory.
Keepers Cottage details
The Keepers Cottage land
Pat and Richard Armstrong
2011 at 2010 prices
Map - where we are
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Places to see:
Carlisle City Centre Shopping
The Lanes, Carlisle
Gretna Green Outlet Village
Second Hand Bookshops
Things to do:
Open water swimming
Things to do at the cottage
Play house and swing
The large lawned garden over looking the moss
Cooking with the fine local farm produce
Visitor reading list
Local places of interest
Carlisle Town Centre
Hexham / Abbey/Moot Hall/ Old Gaol
High Head Sculpture Valley
New Abbey Corn Mill
The Solway Coast
The world of Beatrix Potter
Tullie House Museum & Art Gallery
Holker Hall & Gardens
Buccleuch Hall at Langholm
High Heads Sculpture Valley