HAVING endured the Gatwick drone fiasco, a spot of rest and relaxation in the Lake District seemed the perfect antidote.

Ascending Place Fell last week, we were very much on our own and the views over Ullswater just got better and better as the winter sun cast its warming light over the landscape.

Reaching the summit, the views towards Kirkstone were glorious, our sandwiches were tastier than ever and the joys of family holidays in the Lakes came flooding back.

Apart from the experience of large crowds on such summits, I’d always thought there was little or nothing that could detract from such moments, not even the bad weather which has never deterred us from returning.

Well that's no longer the case. We now have small, buzzy intrusive drones and their inconsiderate pilots occupying summit cairns as mission control.

In disbelief, I’ve subsequently checked and as far as I can see, the managing authority of this World Heritage Site seems to be doing nothing to control this nuisance. A complete contrast to my experience of the American national parks, commons in London and the Peak District national park.They need to wake up.

I’m not averse to model flying machines - I happily grew up with them as a kid - but there's a place for them and its not the wilder parts of the UK where people seek refuge, an escape from the intrusions of modern life.

In my view, the drone menace is a greater threat to the serenity of one of the UK's finest beauty spots than any problem with speeding motor boats on lakes.

I hope my letter will encourage some sort of action in the interests of the majority.

Ian D.H. Middleton


* Editor's note The Westmorland Gazette contacted the Lake District National Park Authority after receiving Mr Middleton's letter and here is its response.

The Lake District National Park is for everyone to enjoy and residents and visitors to the area take part in many different activities as part of this enjoyment.

Although for most drones a special licence is not required, we would always encourage people to seek the permission of the landowner before flying.

We have more information on drones on our website http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk