The first ever Dartmoor Walking Festival in 2016 was a great success and the very positive feedback really supported the idea of it becoming an annual event which is absolutely fabulous.
Therefore Moorland Guides again ran it in 2017 during the same week and once again the public voted with their feet – literally – and it seems that the festival is here to stay!
The 2018 event will be held from Saturday 25th August until Sunday 2nd September inclusive which means that this will be the last bank holiday week of the summer.
In 2018 we are teaming-up with the Dartmoor-365 Facebook group who have over 5,000 followers and so attract many more potential walkers.
All of the events will be labelled according to the grid in the Dartmoor 365 book by John Hayward which is enjoying a resurgence of popularity and is available through the Dartmoor Visitor Centre shops.
The Ramblers, National Trust and other walking providers such as the Woodland Trust and SW Lakes Trust are keen to support the festival and full details will again be in a program which be both online on the www.dartmoorwalkingfestival.co.uk website as well as a paper printed program.
In 2017 the festival raised over £500 for the Donate to Dartmoor fund as well as the Dartmoor Search Dogs and this coming year we will be linking up with the Devon Air Ambulance with a series of varied sponsored walks on the last day of the festival.
The week will be very clearly marketed as “Dartmoor on your Doorstep” with the chosen time of the year again being the last week of the summer holiday encompassing the August Bank Holiday weekend to start it off and ending in the first week of September. This will hopefully allow our visitors to stay on just the extra week to enjoy all that Dartmoor had to offer, but to also encourage our locals to come out onto the moors before the children go back to school and learn about the Dartmoor which is there on their doorsteps every day of the year.
We will be putting on several events each day during the nine-day festival ranging from modest guided strolls and children’s rambles to full day walks and ambitious challenges! There really will be something for everyone including ‘accessible’ events for the less mobile in partnership with the ‘Disabled Ramblers’ Association.
The Dartmoor National Park are fully supporting the week with Ranger-led walks as well as archaeological visits and events and we are delighted to also have the support of those who live and work on Dartmoor within the Dartmoor Commoner’s Council.
Our aim is to have at least four events each day during the nine-day festival, so there really is something for everybody, with evening talks and walks included. The Dartmoor Search and Rescue Team is also supporting the week and if you have ever wondered what they do out in the dark when searching for missing walkers then come and join them on an evening exercise to find out more!
The week is only limited by your imagination so come along, come and explore Dartmoor on your Doorstep and find out more about this incredibly special place. As a result of last year’s feedback more evening events are also being planned.
For more information please contact Simon Dell at Moorland Guides - www.moorlandguides.co.uk