Volunteers on the Pennine Way

Volunteers play a vital role in the maintenance of the Pennine Way particularly in the North Pennines National Landscape, the Peak District National Park, Calderdale and the Yorkshire Dales National Park.  On average, around 250 days of volunteer time are given each year.  Volunteers regularly get involved in a variety of work: from controlling vegetation and installing waymarking, to drainage and surfacing works, fencing and repairing gates.  Their involvement is invaluable in helping to maintain the trails to their high standard.

The Pennine Way People Project

In the North Pennines, the Pennine Way has a dedicated team of volunteers involved in the Pennine Way People Project.  The project started in 2017 and is managed by the North Pennines National Landscape team and is part funded by Natural England through the Pennine National Trails Partnership.  The group consists of around 30 regular volunteers although there are further volunteers who also join to do occasional work.  The stretch of the trail within the National Landscape is split into 14 sections and each section is assigned a core Champion who is responsible for the monitoring and surveying of their section.  In addition, they and the other non-Champion volunteers, are given the opportunity to help out with maintenance work on the trail on a number of days throughout the year.  The volunteers are hugely important in supporting the wider maintenance of the 78-mile stretch of trail within the North Pennines National Landscape and in ensuring those using the route have the best experience possible.

Whilst Pennine Way People volunteers generously give their time for free and enable work to be carried out which could otherwise not be completed, volunteer programmes are not free to run.  Every volunteer needs to be supported to fulfil their role safely and effectively.  It costs thousands of pounds each year to run the Pennine Way People project.  If you would like to make a donation to help fund the ongoing work of these volunteers on the Pennine Way, please follow this link and thank you for your support: Donate to the Pennine Way

The image at the top of the page shows volunteers from the Pennine Way People Project repairing a section of boardwalk at Falcon Clints, County Durham. (Image credit: North Pennines National Landscape).

The Peak Park Conservation Volunteers

In the Peak District, the Peak Park Conservation Volunteers (PPCV) regularly takes working parties out to help with maintenance work on the Pennine Way, working alongside the Peak District National Park Pennine Way Ranger.   The projects undertaken to date have been varied and have included drainage work, rebuilding the trail after landslips, laying new bridges, resurfacing work, and even painting a trig point!

CROWS – Community Rights of Way Service

CROWS volunteers work to improve and repair footpaths in the Calder and Ripponden areas and undertake regular work on the Pennine Way.  They help with a huge variety of tasks including vegetation clearance; repairing or replacing stiles, gates, boardwalks, walls and bridges; improving drainage and path surfaces; and maintaining, repairing and replacing finger posts and waymarkers.  The work they do makes a huge and positive impact to the condition of the National Trail.

How you can get involved

Volunteering opportunities are available along much of the Pennine Way.  If you’re interested in getting involved or would like to find out more, please get in touch via the Contact Us page.


Photograph showing a volunteer reaching to place a stone on the cairn.
Pennine Way volunteers rebuilding cairns at Jacobs Ladder in the Peak District. (Image credit: Peak District National Park Authority)
Photograph showing volunteers installing new flagstones on the trail at Hardraw with Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority staff operating a digger.
Pennine Way volunteers working alongside staff from Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority to repair the trail at Hardraw. (Image credit: Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority)