Understanding and appreciating farming and forestry on Dartmoor

What does success look like?

Visitors, policy makers and local communities will understand the central role that farming, and forestry play in producing food and a range of environmental goods, including landscape character and that this relationship between people and the land is a rich and valuable part of our cultural heritage.  Better understanding and appreciation will lead to lower levels of anti-social behavior including speeding, livestock worrying by dogs and illegal camping

How will this be achieved?

Partners will achieve this through a range of training, advice, new projects, working groups and networks, including the following priorities:

  • Build on existing national programmes to promote an annual farm and woodland ‘open day’ programme by 2022 to enable more people to experience and understand the roles that farming and forestry play in looking after Dartmoor’s special qualities. Linking to existing opportunities such as Lambing Live and working with the farming and Forestry sector to develop new initiatives.
  • Through the Common Cause programme (2021-2025) develop engagement activities that will provide educational opportunities linked to farming and forestry. This will include activities such as ‘The Great Gather’ and the Walling Club.
  • Annual Visitor publications, key websites and National Park Visitor Centres have a coordinated message which highlights the role of high environment, low carbon farming and forestry systems in managing and enhancing the National Park and producing healthy food, fibre and other products. Behavioural change and perceptions will be monitored through the National Park Visitor Survey and feedback from farmers and foresters.
  • Through the Rural Crime Initiative and working closely with the farming community and the Livestock Protection Officer (LPO) develop a programme of education and awareness work linked to dog worrying and road traffic incidents focused on hotspots and seasonal trends. Communicate the ‘hidden costs’ of anti-social behaviour at the farm level and use this to inform educational messages. Monitor data through the LPO records and analyse historic records to improve understanding of trends.
  • Improved and, if necessary, increased signage to ensure public awareness and understanding of issues (dog worrying, road traffic accidents, litter, dog fouling / worming etc.) Including, a targeted initiative to provide on-farm interpretation (linked to the Dartmoor Story and Love Moor Life) in key honey pot locations.