If you encounter a kite incident, alive or dead, please call 077 900 85659 and let FoRK know as soon as possible.     We will respond immediately.



We've had 52867 visitors so far.


Winlaton Mill car park is now closed for at least 8 months whilst extensive building work is carried out on a new visitors centre. People wanting to access the start and finish of the Red Kite Trail should use the alternative parking at Spa Well Car Park (NE21 6JA). This car park will also be used as the meeting place for the Health Walks to be held on the 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd and 30th October 2017. There is still pedestrian access to the Trail and Derwenthaugh Park via the footpath beside the Red Kite pub



See our events page for a new event to be held on Sunday 7th January 2018. This is an invitation to everyone to be part of an International Red Kite Roost count to be held over the weekend of the 6th and 7th of January



Go to the " Kite monitoring 2017 "  page to find out about the results of the public Red Kite Roost watch which was held on Saturday 7th January 2017. Part of a National and European Red Kite census

Go to the "News & Features" page to find out about the newly published book:

The Birds of Holy Island by FoRK member Ian Kerr

The Red Kite
The red kite is one of Britain's rarest and most spectacular birds, especially at close quarters. Between 2004 and 2007 the Northern Kites Project re-introduced 94 red kites into the lower Derwent Valley.  This Project was unique; whereas the previous ones had been carried out in rural areas, this one brought back the kites to a semi-urban environment, close to the large conurbation of Gateshead and its neighbour on the north bank of the River Tyne, Newcastle.   People can now walk to admire the red kites in the Lower Derwent Valley and yet, in the distance, they can see the silver roof of The Sage Gateshead.

Image  Wing Tag D4 Paul Danielson

Image: Derek Bilton
Kite in flight 

It was in 2006 that red kites began to breed in the region for the first time after an absence of 170 years. The core area for the kites is the Lower Derwent Valley but  as the population increases they are slowly becoming more widely distributed.

 Images courtesy of  Carol Farthing-Dunn

When the Northern Kites Project finished in July 2009, the Friends of Red Kites group was established.


Image courtesy of Ken Smith

Go-North East kindly gave the Group a Red Kite Bus for four hours, and we held a rolling Launch at Lintzford Garden Centre and at Gibside.  The co-operation and support of Staff was much appreciated. 

We continue  working to conserve Wildlife, the Economy, working with our local Partners and encouraging people to become the Guardians of these majestic Red Kites, which are so welcome.

 Presentations Team

Harold Dobson                   Judy Summerson

Our Presentation Team is willing to consider any request for an illustrated Talk about the work of Friends of Red Kites, subject to availability of presenters.     We have a basic minimum charge of £25 on a sliding scale, depending on the size of the group.   Travelling expenses are requested.  FoRK is no longer funded by any external group.

Contact us through our website,  or contact Judy Summerson,

whose details can be found here:   http://www.friendsofredkites.org.uk/page4.htm

An up-dated, detailed and extended Guide for the Red Kite Trail is now available.

This and many other leaflets can be obtained from The Thornley Woodland Visitor Centre.