MANY of the people who have been involved in saving and maintaining the historic Kirby Bank Trod gathered today to officially unveil a new information board.

The now-scheduled monument was a major trade route for the monks of Rievaulx Abbey to get to the River Tees.

The information board has been created by members of the Kirby, Great Broughton and Ingleby Greenhow Local History Group (KGBIG), and today's event was hosted by chair of the society, Janice Ronsano, who introduced all the speakers.

The board is situated near the Scout Centre at the lower northern end of the Trod and as society member Grant Frew said: "It is the culmination of all the efforts from many individuals, since we adopted the Trod in 2008. The board reflects the history and features of Kirby Bank as a whole, and not just the Trod, but the geology, pre-history, quarrying, alum and jet industries."

The board was funded by North Yorkshire County Council Locality Budget through County Councillor, Heather Moorhouse, who praised the partnership of the different organisations involved, and spoke of the determination of the society who kept going, despite the odds, to maintain the Trod.

The land where the board is situated belongs to the scouts, and Alan Atkinson, trustee of Stockton and Thornaby Scouts, was full of praise for the society's work.

"We get about 11,000 visitors a year to our site," he said, "and the board is educational and very useful. For the young people who come here it is often their first time on the moors, and the knowledge here will enhance their experience."

Ellie Leary, monuments for the future project officer for the North York Moors, has assisted the group with advice on maintenance and the application for the Traffic Regulation Order restricting motorised vehicles from using the Trod, which has been successful.

"This is such an example of a local community looking after local heritage and I have such respect for the history group in driving it forward," she said.

Mary Frew, chair of Kirkby Parish Council, added: "This is the only route onto the moors from the village and the people are so proud as this scheduled monument is the only one of its kind, and how grateful the village is to the history society for spotting the value of this special place."

Meanwhile, Bob Slater, the task day leader from the North York Moors, and his band of volunteers, were waiting patiently in the wings to begin work on the Trod after the long months of restrictions.