Bonfires, Butterflies and Baked Potatoes
Many hands made light work when more than 80 young people, their parents and youth workers took part in a scrub clearance event at Hopcott, near Minehead recently as part of a ‘Bonfires, Butterflies and Baked Potatoes’ event organised by Heart of Exmoor, Exmoor National Park Authority, The National Trust and The Crown Estate.
Exmoor National Park’s Volunteer Coordinator Patrick Watts-Mabbott said “It was great to see so many people out helping our experienced volunteers. Teams of volunteers all over Exmoor National Park help to keep the area beautiful. If anyone would like to get involved more frequently, we have lots of opportunities, including one where families are welcome on last Sunday of the month at Hunters Inn near Lynton. Anyone who would like more information should visit our website www.exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk/volunteers and book on to a volunteer induction or call me on 07973727469.”
Commenting on the day, Mike Winzer from The National Trust said: “It was so great to see all the youngsters working hard and enjoying the countryside. It was a pleasure to spend time with them, especially as they are future.”
The event also provided an opportunity to learn about heathland management and how it benefits wildlife including the elusive, nocturnal bird the nightjar, and the extremely rare heath fritillary butterfly, which has its UK stronghold on Exmoor. The idea of the day was to create open areas within the scrub for wild species such as these to find sanctuary and to maintain the important heathland habitat.
David Rolls, the Heart of Exmoor education and outreach officer said: “It was a tremendous effort by all concerned, on this wonderful heath. We managed to achieve 2 months’ work in a single day thanks to the efforts of all the young people and their support team.
“Find other brilliant moorland events at the Heart of Exmoor website – www.heartofexmoor.org.uk – join us on Friday 13th of April at the Haddon Hill Big Adventure. Lots of fun family activities and it’s all free!”
Notes to Editors
Heart of Exmoor
Exmoor Moorland Landscape Partnership launched a Heritage Lottery Funded scheme in 2011 that promotes moorland as the Heart of Exmoor.
The Heart of Exmoor scheme helps people to enjoy and appreciate Exmoor’s moorland and supports those who take care of it. The fifteen projects invest half a million pounds to benefit the landscape and community. To find out more, please visit www.heartofexmoor.org.uk or call 01398 322164.