Monday 19 October is #ExmoorDay – a chance to celebrate all that Exmoor National Park offers to the nation and the world. Exmoor National Park boasts inspiring landscapes, thriving communities, incredible wildlife, enterprising businesses, and a rich cultural heritage stemming back centuries.
Exmoor National Park came into being on 19 October 1954 when the Designation Order made by the National Parks Commission was confirmed by the Minister for Housing and Local Government – Harold Macmillan – making it the UK’s 8th National Park.
Home to just under 10,000 residents, the National Park attracts in excess of 2 million visitor days a year and is home to well over 1,000 local businesses. Ancient woodlands and heather-clad moorlands provide important habitats for all kinds of creatures, including iconic free-living Exmoor ponies and the largest population of Red deer in England, alongside rare butterflies, bats, wildflowers, fungi and lichen. At night Exmoor comes alive under some of the darkest skies in the country offering unrivalled opportunities to see thousands of stars above.
Exmoor Day has come about as part of a co-ordinated tourism recovery plan put together by partners to help counter the impacts of Covid-19. This year it will primarily be a virtual event on social media, with people sharing what they love about Exmoor and promoting their Exmoor-based products. On the day you can follow the #ExmoorDay hashtag to join in and local communities, businesses and fans are all invited to take part by celebrating Exmoor in their own style.
Fans of Exmoor near and far are also being invited to send in short films of themselves saying why they love Exmoor as part of a film that will be shared online and through social media on the day. For a chance to be part of it, take a short video (in landscape orientation) of you briefly stating why you love Exmoor / what you most love about Exmoor (ideally no more than 5-10 seconds) on a smartphone and send your video recording via WeTransfer to Katrina at KJMunro@exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk, by 12 October at the latest.
Dan James, Sustainable Economy Manager, said: “The last six months have really demonstrated what a special place Exmoor is, with thousands flocking to the area for the wonderful sense of wellbeing and freedom that comes with spending time outdoors in our beautiful National Parks.
“At the same time the economic impact has been hard felt on Exmoor, with tourism and hospitality accounting for two thirds of employment. Local communities have pulled together and demonstrated the great spirit of Exmoor, and Exmoor Day offers us a chance to continue that recovery process. Whether you are a visitor sharing your favourite Exmoor experience, a business promoting your links to Exmoor or a community celebrating the place you live, we’d really love you to join us in sharing all that is good about Exmoor.”
For further details about the film, planned virtual activities and opportunities to get involved visit www.exmoor-nationalpark.co.uk/exmoor-day or contact Katrina Munro, Economy Project Officer KJMunro@exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk.
PHOTO: By John Spurr from the winter issue of Exmoor Magazine, due out in November.