Ancient boundaries, modern farming

A grant scheme to help repair significant walls and gateways which are clearly visible from the highway or well used access routes. Interpretation to raise public awareness of the importance of respecting stone walls. There has been a gradual deterioration over decades of Dartmoor’s stone walls due to weather, careless clambering by visitors and government grants favouring fencing over stone wall restoration.

Ancient boundaries, modern farming

Damaged Wall

Dry stone wall in need of repair

There are many features that are iconic to the granite landscape of Dartmoor – one of the most distinctive being the dry stone walls built and used across the centuries by the hill farmers of the Moor.  

Over time, there has been a gradual deterioration of Dartmoor’s stone walls due to weather, careless clambering by visitors and government grants which have historically favoured fencing over stone wall restoration. Moor than meets the eye offers this grant scheme to help repair significant walls and gateways which are clearly visible from the highway or well used access routes.

Repaired Wall

A dry stone wall restored to it's former glory

This project enables farmers to rebuild the stone walls and use granite gateposts through a capital grant scheme with the Scheme match-funding 50% of the work undertaken. This achieves practical restoration of some of the walls and gateways whilst also providing a level of pride in our environment and surroundings. Scheduled to be delivered throughout the five years of the Scheme, Phase 1 and 2 of the project ran from 2015-2017 respectively. Applications for Phase 3 of the project will open in Autumn 2017.

To date nine farms have been approved to receive the walling grant, with six now completed and another three underway. 567meteres of wall have been repaired along with several gateways. More recently, a team of volunteers was given the opportunity to try their hand at repairing a section of dry stone walling with impressive results.

Challacombe Wall

Thanks to the team of volunteers who helped to repair this section of wall

The project also includes an interpretive aspect which will aim to improve public understanding of how modern hill farming has changed and how hard many of the farmers already work to integrate our heritage into their farming practice.

Want to know more?

Speak to James Rogers, Farming and Community Wildlife Adviser
Tel: 01822 890913
Email: jrogers@dartmoor.gov.uk

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Last update: 13 Dec 2017 1:58pm