WORK began last week to make the summit of Alfred Wainwright’s first fell, Orrest Head in Windermere, easier for more people to reach.

A £51,000 grant from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development means that it will soon be possible for people with limited mobility and families with pushchairs to enjoy the stunning panoramic view offered by fell.

Currently, the path below the summit has steep steps and is rocky near the top and waterlogging on the summit is also causing problems.

Additionally an unofficial, alternative route avoiding the steps is becoming badly eroded and the landscape is getting damaged.

Marian Jones, Lake District National Park area ranger, said: “We are restoring sections of the Victorian carriage drive and creating a new easy-gradient path to the summit which can be used by people with limited mobility, including people with powered-wheelchairs and families with pushchairs.

“Some additional path improvements and enhanced signposting in Elleray Wood is also part of the project. New signs to give information about the view, local history and natural environment will make it easier for people to explore this lovely woodland.”

Renowned local artist blacksmith, Chris Brammall of CB Arts Ltd, is creating new bespoke seating for the summit and along the route.

The authority will also be planting more trees and carrying out landscape restoration work to make the area more weather resilient.

Work is expected to be finalised by August.

Windermere and Bowness mayor, Adrian Legge said: “The restoration of the Victorian carriage drive and its extension to the summit of Orrest Head will mean that the breath-taking viewpoint will be accessible for parents and grandparents with pushchairs, for those in wheelchairs and for everyone who, until completion of this marvellous project, was unable to manage the last steep part of the ascent.”

The total project costs are being met with additional funding from Lake District National Park Authority, Windermere and Bowness Town Council, The Wainwright Society, Transpennine Express - Community Grant, CLA Charitable Trust, Cumbria County Council, South Lakeland District Council, The Ramblers' Association, E H Booth & Co Ltd, Alpkit, Windermere Taverners Cricket Club and other individual donations. The Lake District Foundation have also assisted with raising funds.