Sons to honour dad’s memory with best Exmoor Ramble yet

Sadly, Ivan Huxtable died of cancer in May this year, having organised the Exmoor Ramble for 29 years

Sadly, Ivan Huxtable died of cancer in May this year, having organised the Exmoor Ramble for 29 years - Credit: NDH

Brothers Brian and Paul Huxtable have pledged to make the 30th Exmoor Ramble charity walk the biggest yet, after losing their inspirational father who made the annual event such a success.

Ivan Huxtable died of cancer in May this year, having organised the fundraising moorland walk for 29 years.

He was cared for in his final months by North Devon Hospice, for whom he had raised tens of thousands of pounds through his Exmoor Ramble event.

Now, Ivan’s two sons Brian and Paul are asking the local community to sign up and join in this year’s walk, to honour the man who created it and fulfil a promise to raise more money than ever before.

“We’re doing this for Pops, because even in his final days all he wanted to talk about was this year’s Exmoor Ramble,” said Brian.


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“He was making sure that we had everything in hand, knowing that he wouldn’t be around to see it through. That is the commitment he had to the cause, and it shows how much he cared. Ivan is a legend to so many on Exmoor because he knew the place like the back of his hand and was very well respected by so many here after a lifetime in the farming community. His annual Exmoor Ramble was always a highlight for so many people, and we’re determined to do him justice by making this year’s event the best one yet this year.”

The Exmoor Ramble takes place on Sunday, September 26, and registration is free. Walkers can choose either a 6 or 14 mile circular route from Simonsbath, carefully designed by Ivan himself before he died.

Ivan with Ali Hunt from North Devon Hospice

Ivan with Ali Hunt from North Devon Hospice - Credit: NDH

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Ali Hunt, from North Devon Hospice said, “Ivan’s knowledge of Exmoor was second to none. The routes he set out were always full of inspiring views, taking in hidden beauty spots that seemingly only he knew. I’m not sure how he did it, but there was always a stag or herd of deer to be seen. This year will be no different, and it is sure to be a glorious occasion. We hope to see as many people sign up as possible, because I can think of no better way to enjoy the beauty of Exmoor.”

2021 will see the 30th edition of the Exmoor Ramble. In that time, it has raised hundreds of thousands of pounds for charity, initially for CLIC Sargent and over the last decade for North Devon Hospice.

After Ivan spent his final days on North Devon Hospice’s bedded unit, his son Brian said: “I can now see why raising money for the hospice was so important to Pops. This place is incredible, it has looked after all of us and we’ve been able to spend time together, knowing he’s not in pain. Seeing the care provided first-hand has made us more determined to fulfil his wish of making the 30th Exmoor Ramble extra special. We hope everyone who loves the moor and who loves spending time outdoors will join us.”

Ali Hunt added. “I’d known Ivan as long as I’ve been involved with North Devon Hospice, which is more than 20 years. You could not wish to meet a nicer man, who had such a sharp wit and the most generous spirit.”

“What he has done for charity over the years, most notably the hospice, is simply incredible. Every person who takes part in this year’s Exmoor Ramble will be helping other local families receive the same care and support as Ivan did in his final months, weeks and days. We hope to see you all there.”

The Exmoor Ramble takes place on Sunday, September 26, offering walkers a 6- or 14-mile circular route, starting and finishing close to Simonsbath. Register for free at northdevonhospice.org.uk

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