The Big Bendrigg Reboot

The Big Bendrigg Reboot

If only life after Covid was as easy as flicking on a switch and turning everything back on again… a reboot might be a quick fix in the world of computers, but to get things back up and running at Bendrigg it’s going to take much more time, effort and money than a “flick of the switch”.

With the centre being closed for over a year, our grounds, buildings and equipment need some TLC before we can get our visitors back to Bendrigg again. However, whilst we have no income from residential visits we really need your help to get us back up and running again.

Our Grounds & Buildings

Our grounds and buildings require regular maintenance. We usually have our maintenance man working full time along with a team of regular volunteers, but to reduce the risk to our staff and our volunteers, we have had to restrict the number of people on site throughout the pandemic.

The great outdoors is wonderful, and we love the “wild” feeling of long grass, but for some areas, like our accessible woodland trail & cycle path, the weeds that have grown through are starting to make the path uneven and less accessible to our visitors.


Our safety equipment such as lifts, hoists, harnesses and helmets, all have an expiration date and with 1 year knocked off, the shelf life of much of our equipment has come to an end and some now needs replacing including a transferable hoist (£2150) that enables our wheelchair users to be safely transferred out of their chair and an accessible seahorse aid (£2100) for our guests with physical disabilities.

So how can you help?

  1. Pick a project from the list below
  2. Decide whether you can give your time, money or a service in kind to help us complete the work.
  3. Make your donation or get in touch with our friendly team about volunteering or giving a gift in kind.

To Donate

You can donate towards our Reboot fund here

To Volunteer

Sign up today by emailing your name, number and details of which project you’d like to volunteer on to our Volunteer Coordinator Kate.

To give a gift or service in kind

If you can provide a service or gift in kind to help us with the projects below please get in touch with our Fundraising and Marketing Officer Martha


Project 1 – Woodland & Cycle Paths

The great outdoors is wonderful, and we have created lots of natural habitats to help wildlife thrive throughout our site, but some areas must be maintained. Our accessible woodland trail & cycle path, the weeds that have grown through are starting to make the path uneven and less accessible to our visitors who rely on a wheelchair to get around. Our cycle path & woodland path requires resurfacing with compact gravel to make exploring our site and taking part in cycling possible for our visitors with physical disabilities.

What we need
We will need to hire a digger & a dumper to level the paths and lay a new layer of compact gravel in order to make the cycle path easily accessible again.

Digger & Driver Hire 3 days – £600
Dumper Hire 3 days – £150
Gravel to resurface the track – £1400
Total cost of project £2150

Can you help?
You can make a donation towards the cost of this project here

Project 2 – Painting Party

Several structures around our site need weather proofing with a good lick of paint, ready for when our groups return. So whether it’s jazzing up our musical instrument garden or some more precise painting of our exterior wooden doors, benches and panels – we’d really appreciate your help with volunteering in May or June.

What we need
Wood paint & exterior building paint – £350 Grant from Cumbria Community Foundation
Brushes and Materials – £25  Donated by B&Q Kendal
5 volunteers to help us complete this project

Can you help?
Donate towards the cost of this project here.
If you’d like to volunteer for the painting party please email Kate with your details

Project 3 – Oakwood revamp

Our Oakwood building needs kitting out ready for our residential volunteers who work alongside our tutorial team with our groups who stay on site.

What we need

2 x double bed frame (£367) Grant from Cumbria Community Foundation
Skip Hire (£250) Donated by Think Recycling
3 x single bed frames (£360) Donated by Sealy + 3 new single mattresses!
Cleaning materials – £30 Donated by Sarah from Sweet Wheels
4 x duvets (£10 each – £40) Donated by Asda Kendal
4 x double bedding (mattress protectors £5 each, sheets £5 each and duvet covers £15 each – £100) Donated by Asda Kendal
Rollers Blinds / curtains for 7 short windows – £250 Donated by Homebase Kendal
Paint, Rollers, Trays, Sandpaper, filler – £100 Donated by B&Q Kendal
A new kettle £20  Donated by Tricia Wood

UPDATE : We are so grateful to the amazing teams from Cumbria County Council and Amphigean who have signed up to volunteer and complete the work needed for this project.

Amphigean have also donated £200 towards the cost of the project
ASDA Kendal has donated Duvets and Bedding
Homebase Kendal have donated Roller Blinds
Cumbria Community Foundation have given a grant for 2 double beds
Think Recycling have donated a Skip
B&Q has donated paint and materials
Sealy have donated 3 Single Divans + 3 Single Mattresses

We now need to raise the funds to purchase the items above or have them supplied by a company as gifts in kind. Can you help?

Project 4 – Green Fingers

Can you lend a hand and help to get Bendrigg back to its best by sparing a day to weed, sweep, plant and tidy? Sign up with your family and friends to volunteer and bring along your gardening gloves, a spade and a bucket and get ready to muck in and make a difference.

Please email to register your interest in volunteering on Saturday 12th June. Toilet facilities will be provided and volunteer numbers will be limited with people spread around our grounds to ensure your safety and make social distancing easy to accomplish.

What we need
Approximately 25 volunteers
Tea, Coffee, Biscuits £10 Donated by Sarah from Sweet Wheels
Milk and Cakes £10  Donated by Tricia Wood
A selection of outdoor hardy plants & compost £250  Donated by Homebase Kendal & Jenna Wood
Tractor fuel – £100
Total remaining £100 + staff time

Can you help?
Sign up to volunteer or let us know if you can give a gift in kind here

Project 5 – Reboot Refresh

The Lodge and Kinross exterior walls are showing the effects of the Cumbrian weather and as a result of having no regular maintenance last year they need to be painted.

What we need
To hire a painter and decorator with scaffolding, paint and materials will cost around £5000

Can you help?

We’d really appreciate your donation towards our reboot project.

Staff time – £1500

In order for these 5 projects to take place we also have to cover our staff time which goes into the planning, marketing, coordinating volunteers and our maintenance man overseeing the projects.

To donate to the Reboot Project and see how much we’ve raised here >

Thank you for your support with our Reboot Project!


Read about the Impact that your support will have here.

There are lots of ways you can get involved with supporting Bendrigg. Find out more here.




Your Movement Matters

Your Movement Matters

Guest Blog by Emily Ankers & Chris Kay

It is clear that we have an issue with diversity and inclusion in the outdoors in the UK. The information that we have tells us that in England, those from an ethnic minority background are 60% less likely to visit the natural environment than the rest of the population [4], the existence of personal disability or a long term-illness can be a significant constraint to participation in outdoor activities [5], and women tend to participate in outdoor recreation at lower rates than men for reasons including societal gender expectations, lack of exposure and fear [6]. These are of course not extensive statistics, just some examples.

However, we do also have some significant data gaps. We have limited data of varying quality on participation in walking and climbing related activities by different faith groups, those who identify themselves as outside of the binary genders (female and male are the binary genders) and LGBTQIA+ participation, amongst other aspects of identity.




The Your Movement Matters survey has been commissioned to investigate participant demographics in walking and climbing activities. The survey data will give us a better understanding of who is and who is not participating in walking and climbing related activities in the UK and Ireland. We need as many adults (age 16+) as possible to take part in the survey. This means no matter what your background, age, gender, sexual orientation, ethnic background, faith, socio-economic status, if you have a disability or not, mental-health condition and wherever you live within the UK and Ireland, we want to hear from you. If you’re a seasoned mountaineer, you walk your dog in the local park, you climb indoors occasionally or regularly all year round or, you don’t do any of these activities. We cannot stress it enough, there is literally no adult in the UK or Ireland who is not welcome to take part.

Often, data is lacking because either the groups have not been reached by research projects, the question have not been asked before or people skip the questions. The ‘Your movement matters’ survey contains questions that you can skip, we can’t make anyone answer a question that they don’t want to (*important* all data and information will be anonymous). People have perfectly valid reasons for skipping questions but sometimes, it can be a case of personal perception on how important you think a question is. For example, you see a question asking for gender and you may think “oh, well gender is not important to me because I think that all genders are equal and I treat all with respect.” Gender equality, we like it, but that’s not a reason to skip a question. It removes detail from our data when we really need to know what the gender participation in walking and climbing related activities is. We need the most accurate and detailed data to help us make sure that all people can access the opportunities they need to participate in activities.

The data will be used by the funding partners to help develop policies, resources and implement change to support in the improvement of inclusion and diversity within the outdoors.

The Your movement matters survey is now live and we would be grateful if you could take the time to complete it. All survey respondents will be given the opportunity to enter a prize draw for a £100 Ellis Brigham voucher.

Click HERE to participate in the survey.


This research is funded by Mountain Training, the British Mountaineering Council, the Association of British Climbing Walls, NICAS, the Ramblers, the Camping and Caravanning Club, the Outdoor Industries Association and Plas y Brenin.

This research is being conducted by the Carnegie School of Sport, Leeds Beckett University.

Contacts: , and


[4] S. Evison, J. Burt, S. Preston, Kaleidoscope: Improving support for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities to access services from the natural environment and heritage sectors. Natural England Commissioned Reports, 2017.

[5] OIA and Sport England, Getting Active Outdoors: A study of Demography, Motivation, Participation and Provision in Outdoor Sport and Recreation in England, 2015.

[6] K. Evans and D.M. Anderson, ‘It’s never turned me back’: female mountain guides’ constraint negotiation. Annals of Leisure Research, 2018. 21(1): p. 9-31



This is a guest blog written for the Bendrigg Trust by Emily Ankers and Chris Kay.

If you would like to feature on our blog with content relating to the outdoors and disability please email