Understanding and Activing Wtihin Loweswater: A community approach to cathment management
Department of Sociology, Bowland North, Lancaster University, LA1 4YD, UK
Tel: +44 (0) 1524 594178 Fax: +44 (0) 1524 594256 E-mail: sociology@lancaster.ac.uk
Home > Research Clusters > The Setting up of the Loweswater Knowledge Collective (LKC)

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Research Cluster 1 - Setting up the Loweswater Care Project (LCP)

The idea of setting up the LCP (then still refered to as the Loweswater Knowledge Collective or LKC) was first discussed with community and institutional stakeholders in November 2007 (see reports of these meetings under 'past meetings' on the Community Noticeboard page).

The LCP became an innovative forum that worked hard to:

  • Level out hierarchies and boundaries among institutions, the local community, scientists and individuals;
  • Allow for critical engagement by all actors with livelihood, research and community agendas;
  • Create the scope for a blending of previously distinct agendas of research and action;
  • Stimulate different kinds of action that could foster various changes in environment-society relationships in the catchment.

The agenda of LCP meetings was driven by LCP participants and structured in such a way as to allow time for both formal and informal discussions. Meetings were facilitated by the Lancaster research team (Claire Waterton, Lisa Norton, Stephen Maberly, Nigel Watson, and Judith Tsouvalis) and by the Community Researcher (Kenneth Bell). Occasionally, meetings were recorded with permission from the participants, and minutes of meetings were written up and distributed to LCP participants as well as archived on this website (see 'Community Noticeboard' page). The main task of the researchers was to get this organisation up and running and to help create something that was self-sustaining. In this it has succeeded, and the LCP is now a community run group that publicizes its activities on the Melbreak Communities website.

Among LCP participants were:

  • the Parish Council;
  • Loweswater residents;
  • the farmers (8 beef and sheep farmers remain within the catchment) that comprised the Loweswater Improvement Project (LIP), which is now part of the LCP;
  • the Lancaster research team;
  • the National Trust (who own one farm, the lake and land adjoining the lake);
  • the EA;
  • the LDNPA;
  • the Lake District Still Waters Partnership;
  • other instutional stakeholders and individuals (see Minutes of LCP meetings on the 'Community Noticeboard' page for lists of participants).

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