CAMPAIGNING charity Friends of the Dales has been joined by biologist and nature writer Dr Amy-Jane Beer as its honorary president.

Dr Beer, who lives in North Yorkshire, has written more than 30 books on science and natural history, including Cool Nature and A Tree A Day. She is also a country diarist for The Guardian newspaper, a columnist for British Wildlife and a regular contributor to BBC Wildlife and Countryfile magazines. She said, “In Friends of the Dales I see an organisation that can make a genuine difference – they are vocal, energetic and creative, and willing to reach out and make connections in a common cause. This is the best of grassroots activism, and I’m delighted to be adding my voice to theirs.

“The Yorkshire Dales are already feeling the impacts of the climate change and biodiversity crises. I feel on the positive side the landscape and its communities are also perfectly placed to lead the way in sustainable land management, nature recovery, responsible access and in revolutionising public understanding of farming and rural heritage and nature.

"I can’t wait to help celebrate the natural and human heritage of the Dales, whilst also inspiring locals, visitors and those who’ve yet to experience the magic for themselves, to bring about positive change.”

Bruce McLeod, chair of Friends of the Dales said having Dr Beer on board would help the Gargrave based charity reach out to more people.

"Having such a distinguished environmental writer join our charity as president is an important step in helping us further spread the word about our work to help protect and improve the Dales for the generations to come.

"Some of the issues we are currently campaigning about go right to the heart of the concerns facing the whole planet, such as plastic pollution, loss of biodiversity and habitats and the destruction of our natural carbon sinks, such as our peatlands. Amy-Jane’s passion for the natural world is well known and we believe that her voice will enable us to engage a new demographic of environmentalist to our causes.”

Dr Beer's latest book, The Flow was started following the death of a close friend during a kayaking trip in the Howgills on New Year's Day in 2012.

The book has has taken her to rivers all over the country for walking, paddling, swimming, canoeing and kayaking.

It was a visit to Cowside Beck above Arncliffe with her son, that she describes as one of her most visceral and memorable experiences in nature, when she fully perceived the connection between the grikes in the limestone pavements above with calcite ‘creamy fudge icing’ (tufa) deposits in the river being below.

“It was a moment of clarity as to how the Earth is constantly re-modelling itself around us, of how everything is connected – rocks, water, life − and of the dizzying scale of it all in space and time," she said.