The Indian Summer has finally arrived and Dartmoor is looking spectacular in the late summer sun with early morning mist sitting in the river valleys.
But this summer saw people come and enjoy Dartmoor, during its 60th Annniversary year, for a host of reasons and in a variety of different ways. Over the last few weeks we have seen cyclists strain every sinew whilst competing in the Tour of Britain; orienteers enjoy the Caddihoe Chase; a centenary car rally; horseriders at the Hunter Trial at Holwell, visitors enjoying Widecombe Fair and Bellever Day; the MOD holding their annual Military Heritage weekend; photographers on the evening Haytor Hoppa Excursion (catch the last excursion of the season on 08 October) and in mid-August it was Harrowbeer Airfield’s turn to welcome visitors (see the report following) with upto 8000 people enjoying their 70th anniversary celebrations.
These are just a small flavour of the wide variety of events but if you are thinking of organising an event on Dartmoor then please see the National Park Authority’s event pages and if you want to keep track on what is happenning then see the Authority’s Facebook page.
The Harrowbeer Airfield 70th Anniversary event (August 13th and 14th) was spectacular!
Ranger’s Ella Briens, Paul Glanville and voluntary warden (as well as National Park Guide) Tom Maddock attended over the weekend with our information trailer, adding to the impressive array of contributors to this very popular event. The old airfield and ‘bomb bays’ were filled with visitors, watching aerial displays from the RAF Sea King Helicopter and Battle of Britain fly bys, together with plenty to see on the ground , airfix models to build, a spitfire restoration project, vintage vehicles, a dog show and lots, lots more! But the highlight of the weekend had to be a ten minute aerial display by an original Spitfire and Hurricane, a very special and emotional sight.
The Harrowbeer Interest group have achieved so much over the last few years, and the popularity of the event was a testament to all of their hard work. Over the years their has been support from National Park Rangers; work parties to remove the gorse and scrub from the old aircraft dispersal pens (under supervision of National Park Archaeologist Andy Crab); school groups (such as Longcause, Mannamead, Kelly College) opening up of one of the old shelters by clearing tons of soil, turf and stone; and then of course the invaluable, ongoing work of keeping the area tidy achieved by the Tavistock Taskforce. who take great pride in keeping this area tidy and have gone on to do further scrub clearing work with the Interest Group.
If you are interested in volunteering for a wide range of activities with the National Park, please see the volunteering pages of the National Park website.