This project aims to give something back to the community as a Social Enterprise Scheme but importantly to provide for those less able. My father-in-law was disabled having lost a lower limb, being wheelchair bound does not make outdoor sport easy, special facilities are required to ensure inclusivity. In our case a small boathouse will provide disabled toilets, a specially adapted kitchen where wheelchair bound anglers can make themselves a coffee and house a small weed boat for the ongoing maintenance of the tarn. A small training room will also be available for the University and their outdoor degree programs.
I therefore urge you to look at this project with an open mind, I am not a property developer, this is not a leisure centre and this project is not about profit. I am a passionate individual with a vision for the future of my own grandchildren. It is really about providing an ECO vision where we can demonstrate that agriculture and outdoor health & wellbeing can live side by side without harming our environment - surely this must be the way forwards for all of us.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me directly.
Thanks for taking the time to read this info.
Sea Bass, East Coast USA
From the word go this project had to be more than bringing a cultural & educational change to farming Practices in Cumbria, there will be life beyond BREXIT (if it happens), it just may no longer be animal grazing, if removal of subsidies (CAPS) means it's no longer financially viable, how will you re-purpose your old barns and regenerate your rural agricultural industries, hopefully not just through airbnb.
We plan to train the next generation in association with colleges and Universities so they can make the real difference by being ambassadors for the future. In addition to providing direct employment for Ex-Service personnel. Those who may be opposed to a new business in the National Park, or the introduction of Aquaponics into Cumbria (probably because they do not understand it fully), need to ask themselves a soul searching question. Do I really care about a poly tunnel hidden on the landscape, or do I really care about my grandchildren? The question is that fundamental.
Finally we reach the point of passion and that is angling. I caught my first trout aged six in the beck that runs through Tower Wood Outdoor Pursuit Centre on the banks of lake Windermere, my Grandparents were the wardens there, I have been hooked ever since.
I know angling contributes a lot to our economy, from a personal point of view, just looking at my own mass fishing tackle collection and notwithstanding the money I have invested travelling and angling on every continent except Antartica, this is a sport thats gets people outdoors, in tune with nature. I am concerned about the health of the next generation, the Xbox couch potatoes - when was the last time you took your own kids outdoors to try something new, I have three sons, and I still remember the look on each of their faces and the joy it brought to them when they caught their first fish. It's a proud moment for any father.
Most freshwater Anglers are conservationists, we no longer need to keep the fish that we catch, we put them back to live another day or visit a trout farm, where fish are bred to be caught to protect our wild stocks and in some cases to replenish them.
Hatchery fish grown in Aquaponics have the double benefit of providing nutritional waste that is used as plant food, in a closed loop water recycling system so there is no longer the need to release fertlizers, herbicides or pesticides into our environment. These are the very products through traditional farming techniques that are degrading our soil, polluting our watercourses and oceans in the first place.
As I said - something has to give.
I think its important to know something about the person at the helm when you examine projects like this.
There are always those who object to change and especially revolutionary changes. I consider this project however to be more evolutionary. In fact the Aztec's were the first to develop Aquaponics in the 1400's - we just forgot about it or ignored it in the interest of corporate mass production and profit
Following my service as a British Army Infantry Officer, I lived overseas for 20 years, with a career in General Management, working in The United Arab Emirates, Germany, The USA and North Africa for several multi-national brands in a successful C-Level career with responsibility for many countries across these four continents. During this time through extensive international travel, I saw the best and the worst mankind has to offer, particularly in corporate waste and pollution, and particularly in areas of poverty and overpopulation.
We are now at a tipping point in our own evolution as a species and something has to give or the ecology of our planet may reach a cliff edge that we cannot return from.
I witness first hand these effects on our rivers and oceans being a Qualified PADI Master Scuba Instructor and keen conservationist fighting for species protection and catch & release fishing methods all over the globe, the latest success on the Mighty Margaree Salmon River in Nova Scotia, which is for the first time in its long history now catch & release for Atlantic Salmon.
Sultanate of Oman
Margaree River, Nova Scotia