To anyone who loves the wild flowers of Great Britain and Ireland, there are some places that beckon time and again, such as The Lizard in Cornwall, The Burren in Ireland's County Clare and Ben Lawers in Perthshire, Scotland. Upper Teesdale in England's County Durham must, however, be included among these jewels of our botanical heritage. This locality, which is within sight of the highest point of the Pennines, has an outstanding and special flora that has been shaped by its altitude, land-use patterns and diverse geology. Many of the plants found here are rare and localized, while others are more common and widespread, but together they form the botanically unique "Teesdale Assemblage". For this reason, Upper Teesdale is a hotspot for botanists. It is also a scenically beautiful area, located within easy reach of the industrial heartlands of the north-east, and is much visited by walkers and tourists. This book offers visitors unique insights about this area and its botanical riches.
Margaret E. Bradshaw says that she is "hefted to the hills and flora of Teesdale". Over the past seventy years, nobody has played a greater part in the recognition and conservation of Teesdale's botanical riches. Since the 1950s, she has painstakingly surveyed and monitored its special plants, campaigned for them and inspired a generation of botanists along the way. Her fount of knowledge and experience – now distilled in this book – is a remarkable gift to those who continue her work.