Welcome to our autumn issue. As regular readers will know, summer issue was not available in the shops although it was available by pre-order (and we do have a few left in case you missed it and want to order one). So, with our return to the shops for this new issue, we thought that we would celebrate with a bumper edition! The mag is 15% longer than usual and is packed with autumnal goodness which I hope you will enjoy.
Readers said that they liked the summer format whereby the mag was broken down into sections so we have carried this on here. In the first of these sections, ‘Food and Farming’, Victoria Eveleigh conducts a virtual nine-way interview with multiple members of Exmoor Hill Farming Network’s Women In Farming Group, Jane Adkins outlines the wonderful work of the charity Countrymen UK, Jo Laver interviews Rachael Jarrett and Andy Rock about their delicious produce at Herby4 in the Quantocks and Miguel Tenreiro cooks up a seafood feast at the Porlock Weir Hotel.
As we head ‘Over the Hills’, we start with a beautiful circular walk from Porlock Weir with Sue Viccars, taking in the historic landscapes of Ashley Combe. Julia Amies-Green takes us on a beautiful photographic journey through the ‘Shades of Autumn’, Endymion Beer heads to Watersmeet and Julian Gurney swaps his summer Tilley hat for his flat cap as he pens his autumn ‘Nature Diary’. Wayne Thomas takes us fishing Wimbleball, two ‘active Dans’, Dan French and Dan Brice, from Exmoor Adventures and Channel Events, head to the hills for some e-biking and winter running, and Michelle Werrett glories in the simple beauty of nuts and mast.
Our Heritage section includes features on tithe barns, ‘Working Camp 92 at Tiverton, the storm-vanished Quantocks port of Lilstock and the challenges faced by Wootton Courtenay during the Second World War and more recently. In our ‘Home and Garden’ section of the magazine Rosemary FitzGerald teams up with Julia Amies-Green to create a beautiful article on scabious, Mel Roach interviews textile designer Sam Pickard, and Jonathan Webster at RHS Rosemoor explains how their new ‘Cool Garden’ has evolved and developed. Lucy Large, herself a talented artist, visits Jo Dove in Wiveliscombe to talk about her ceramics.
Finally, our ‘In Conversation With’ section includes five interviews, mainly with two-legged subjects, although some four-legged candidates join in! Tony James visits photographer Terry Walker in Watchet; Cindy Cowling interviews Liz Pendarves from Porlock Vale Stud and Staff Sergeant Lisa Leighton for our Stableyard articles, and Victoria Eveleigh meets Spud, the beautiful and bouncy Newfoundland-cross-Old English sheepdog, and his owner Laura Kennard from Borough Farm. Jane Mares talks to Bill Liversidge. Numerous readers will remember Bill as he had a profound influence on many a West Somerset childhood through his wonderful role running the former Farm Unit at the West Somerset Community Collage – and I predict that many hundreds of Bill’s former pupils will be delighted to see their hero enjoy six pages in our magazine – we are honoured to have you Bill!
Happy reading everyone and enjoy the autumn.
Naomi (and Hurley)