Discovery trail opened at Wimbleball

THE recently completed Woodland Discovery Trail has been officially opened at Wimbleball Lake, near Dulverton, by Bryan Cath of West Country Walks and Cairns Boston, chairman of South West Lakes Trust which manages the reservoir and surrounding countrysid

THE recently completed Woodland Discovery Trail has been officially opened at Wimbleball Lake, near Dulverton, by Bryan Cath of West Country Walks and Cairns Boston, chairman of South West Lakes Trust which manages the reservoir and surrounding countryside. A party of guests, including David Wood, Deputy Lieutenant of Somerset and John Alvis MBE, High Sheriff of Somerset, enjoyed a guided walk led by Darryl Birch, South West Lakes Trust's Exmoor area manager, and conservation assistant Kevin Nicholson.Darryl said: "There are many beautiful walks at Wimbleball, but the new Trail has been developed with less frequent walkers in mind. Sometimes people from towns can come to the countryside and be overwhelmed by the 'green-out' of the landscape. Sculptures and interpretation can help to stimulate thoughts and answer questions they may have of their surroundings." The new 4km trail follows the edge of the lake between the tea room parking area and the majestic dam and aims to encourage people to leave their cars, and go for a short walk. Along the trail are a number of sculptures, including willow figures by renowned local artist Stephen Froom, and interpretation points to stimulate walkers to think about the landscape, and some of the activities that are conducted on and around the lake, as well as some of the historical aspects of an upland Exmoor Valley. The Trail winds through a mixture of habitats; from open, tussocky grassland, past ancient hedgerows, traditional coppice management plots where dormice can be found, and into an area of semi-natural oak woodland where a bat monitoring programme has been long established. The idea is to discover the different habitats that will eventually lead to high forest. Bryan Cath, who opened the Trail, is also the organiser of the popular, annual North Devon and Exmoor Walking Festival. The 2009 Festival starts on April 30 and more information about itmay be found on www.walkingnorthdevon.co.uk. Information about Wimbleball Lake may be found on www.swlakestrust.org.uk, or by calling 01398 371460


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