Haweswater RSPB reserve. The southern tip of the reservoir, near the car park. Cumbria, England. June 2006.



Situated between the South Pennines and the Lake District, Bowland is a rugged and expansive upland landscape of moorland, blanket bog, farmland and wooded valleys.

Bowland is an important place for upland birds with much of its farmland home to breeding waders such as lapwings.

Until recently, Bowland was England's last remaining stronghold for breeding hen harriers, with the majority of the nests located on the estate owned by water company United Utilities.

The RSPB has been working in Bowland for the past 30 years. During this time we have monitored hen harriers on the estate. We have also worked with United Utilities to help restore blanket bog and create new native oak woods to benefit wildlife and improve water quality.

We are taking steps to ensure restored and well-managed upland habitats support even more wildlife. Our vision is to see hen harriers breeding and thriving once again in Bowland and for waders to flourish on the moorland edge.


PDF, 1.5Mb. Date: 5 September 2014

Futurescapes - Bowland

Explore the area

Find out what’s going on near this Futurescape, including places to visit, news and local events, plus how you can work or volunteer for us. 

Forest of Bowland, general view showing sheep
Forest of Bowland

Featured projects

We're working to safeguard and improve special places for nature. Each Futurescape contains a range of initiatives in addition to our reserves. The combination of these creates better conditions for wildlife across the countryside.


Skydancer is an exciting four-year project aimed at raising awareness and promoting the conservation of hen harriers in the north of England.

Hen harrier Circus cyaneus, adult female in flight, hunting, Loch Gruinart RSPB reserve, Islay
Hen harrier

Our partners

Futurescapes is all about collaboration. There are many organisations and people involved in managing land in Bowland. Our challenge is working together to find ways of making more space for nature. To achieve this we’re working with:

Adult Lapwing feeding in wet meadow at Elmley Marsh RSPB reserve.