‘Discovering Exmoor : People and Place’
Dulverton Town Hall, Friday 11 April 2014, 10am to 3pm.
Sixty years ago Exmoor was designated a national park because of its dramatic coastline, extensive tracts of moorland inter-mixed with ancient woodland and upland farmland, the whole establishing a mosaic of contrasts providing recreational opportunities for walking and riding in particular. The Hobhouse Report stated that “here is a potential national park which is happily free from problems”. This statement could not have been further from the truth. From the beginning there was fierce opposition to the designation and robust debate over loss of moorland, afforestation proposals, changing hill farming practices, dealing with extreme weather conditions, and with little known about the archaeology, other local businesses, and an only embryo tourist industry. These issues are very relevant today in different ways, and underline the need to discover more about Exmoor, its people and the place.
As a special Conference to celebrate the 60th anniversary, the Exmoor Society in partnership with the Exmoor National Park Authority has teamed up with Exeter University and the Centre for Rural Policy Research to raise some of these important issues, to discover what has been found out about them, and to influence the debate on how to manage this complex landscape.
· Dr Matt Lobley – Exmoor farming in a changing policy environment.
· Professor Richard Brazier – Can we create resilient landscapes? Understanding the effects of moorland restoration on the Exmoor Mires project.
· Dr Lee Bray – New archaeological discoveries on Exmoor.
· Dr Stewart Barr – Flooding and Communities.
· Professor Michael Winter – will conclude on the day’s presentations and debate.
Places are limited – booking is essential. The deadline for bookings is 4th April 2014. SPRING CONFERENCE BOOKING FORM 2014.