Cumbria Wildlife Trust is worried that climate change could cause irreversible damage to the region's plants and wildlife.

David Harpley, conservation manager at the trust, has issued a rallying call to Cumbrians to help protect the environment – and warned that the cost of inaction could be a loss of some of the county's attractions.

He said: "Climate change could indeed force some of Cumbria's plants and animals to leave the county forever.

“For example Arctic char, a fish found in Windermere, as a relic of the end of the last ice age, only live in cold water.

“Alpine plants such as the purple saxifrage are also under threat with rising temperatures, as is the Scotch Argus butterfly, of which there are only two colonies left in the whole of England – one is at our Smardale nature reserve near Kirkby Stephen.

“Another butterfly found in Cumbria, the mountain ringlet, is also at threat because of climate change.

“Organisations like Cumbria Wildlife Trust are working hard to protect these precious plants and animals and we can all play our part in trying to tackle climate change, by looking at our own individual energy consumption and just using what we need.”