Wellington Monument (c) National Trust/Fran Stothard
This October, the National Trust will be celebrating 200 years since the laying of the foundation stone at Wellington Monument with a special event on 21 October. Together with partners from the Blackdown Hills AONB and ActionTrack performance company, they will be presenting an evening performance and community celebration for all of the locals. Continue reading…
The South West Coast Path Challenge returns in October for the third year running and is bigger and better than ever as TV’s walking greats, Julia Bradbury and Paul Rose, will be backing it all the way.
Julia Bradbury’s latest series for ITV, Britain’s Best Walks, included two of her favourites on the Coast Path.
A jagged jewel in the South West’s crown, Cheddar Gorge boasts the biggest inland cliffs in Britain – stunning features that frame the country’s largest gorge – and in September this year, wild sleepers will have a unique opportunity to camp on the canyon rim, above the world-famous crags and caves, amid the magical Mendip Hills, while enjoying all the activity taking place around England’s newest outdoor festival.
Kingston lacy, a National Trust estate near Wimborne, Dorset, is famous for its snowdrop display. The snowdrop walk stretches through the 40-acre garden for one and a half miles. Even without the cold weather needed to encourage the snowdrops to bloom the team are still expecting a good display throughout late January and February.
A £1 million grant has been awarded towards urgent repairs of the Wellington Monument by earlier today.
The money, announced by Chancellor Philip Hammond’s in his first Autumn Statement, comes from fines levied on the banking industry for manipulating the LIBOR rate. The government committed £102 million over the next 4 years to support good causes – with £1 million going to the repairs of the Wellington Monument.
Andy Semple, Assistant Director of Operations for the Trust in Somerset & Gloucestershire, explains: ‘This is an incredible start to our fundraising. We have been working hard over the past year to understand why the structure is deteriorating and to talk to local people about why it’s so important to them.
‘It will be 200 years next October since the foundation stone was laid and today’s news is hopefully an important step in safeguarding the Monument for the next 200 years for the benefit of the nation.’
Rebecca Pow MP says: ‘I am absolutely thrilled that the National Trust has been awarded £1 million of Libor funding for the restoration of our much loved Wellington Monument.
‘For over a year I have been working with the National Trust and the whole community on the campaign to restore the Monument and over the last week I have been stepping up the pressure. I have personally stressed to both the Chancellor and the Chief Secretary to the Treasury the importance of this commemorative structure internationally, nationally and crucially locally making it clear just what it would mean to see it restored to its full former glory.
L-R Helen Sharp, Project Manager; Simon Larkins, General Manager and Rebecca Pow MP (C)Rebecca Pow
‘The awarding of these funds is testament to the hard work of the National Trust, the thousands of people who signed my parliamentary petition, the newly crowned local monument champions and everyone else who has shown support for the cause.’
This funding gives the project a huge boost. The next step is for the National Trust to submit their first round application to the Heritage Lottery Fund in a couple of week’s time towards the £3million still needed to raise for the project to go ahead.
The Trust would like to thank Rebecca Pow as the Libor Funding was made possible through her support and commitment to the project.
People in and around Wellington, who are interested in becoming one of a small group of volunteers needed to support the Wellington Monument Project, have been asked to get in touch with the National Trust by 9 September.
Helen Sharp, National Trust Project Manager, explains: ‘We are looking for a small group of committed individuals at this stage. We’re calling them the ‘Monument Champions’ because we hope they will act as advocates within the local community.
The National Trust’s Wellington Monument on the Blackdown Hills (c)National Trust
The National Trust has just launched a £250,000 fundraising campaign to help care for Trevose Head in North Cornwall.
When the sale is completed in late September, one of the first things the Trust will be doing is undertaking a bio-survey of the existing habitats and wildlife increasing the understanding of what is currently there, helping to shape conservation work that will ensure this spectacular Cornish headland is managed appropriately for nature.
Old Harry Rocks at Sunrise. Photographer: Becky Stares
The South West Coast Path Challenge in October 2015 is a fundraising event, which aims to set a new record for the number of times people can walk or run the Coast Path in one month. Participants can create their own challenge or join one of four organised 10 mile challenge walks – every mile counts!
On Saturday 31st October, the last of the 10 mile Challenge walks kicks off on the beautiful Dorset coast – the official end of the South West Coast Path.