Families enjoy day at Mortehoe with National Trust

Joseph Bulmer

LOCAL families enjoyed a day out with a difference during half term week – clearing gorse from the misty hills overlooking Mortehoe.

The family volunteering event was the first of its kind organised by the National Trust in North Devon and although it might sound like hard work, the emphasis was on fun, getting together and enjoying the outdoors.

The weather did not co-operate but several families joined trust staff to clear the stubborn gorse with hand tools, before burning it on a large bonfire, cooking lunch and toasting marshmallows!

“It gives families an opportunity to work together as a team on practical conservation,” explained Head Ranger for Morte, Jonathan Fairhurst.

“It gives them a challenge and the kids love it. They are using quite adult tools but safely and with the correct instruction.”

The work also has a crucial benefit for management of the land. Some of the gorse was up to 30 years old and had formed dense blocks, restricting grazing and wildlife.

Eleven-year-old Jordan Davison said it was the first time he had done anything like this. He said he found it fun and satisfying to be outside working with his family.