New Perspectives – Erika’s story

  • Contributor information: CNP

The latest in our New Perspectives series comes from Erika Cann who has created a booklet of walks exploring the special landscape of Dartmoor National Park, accessible by public transport.

Of her project, Erika explains “I love getting out onto the moors but I don’t drive, which in the past has been a major barrier for getting outdoors. Over the past few years, a new bus route has opened, as well as the historic train line to Okehampton reopening, which has provided significantly more varied and more frequent options to access Dartmoor. I wanted to encourage others to make use of the new public transport options to Dartmoor … to give people the confidence to explore the moors if they haven’t done so before.”

Walkers in Dartmoor

We’re delighted to share Erika’s walking booklet – now available locally from train and bus stations and local hotspots around Dartmoor National Park.

I noticed that there weren’t any walks easily found online that incorporated the bus/train routes into the map so I wanted to discover and share some walks that would be suitable for a range of people, whether they wanted a longer hike, or a family friendly route. I also wanted to prove that you could see so many varied parts of Dartmoor from walking from public transport stops; from wooded riverside walks, to the old viaduct and railway path, to moorland, stone circles, and waterfalls – there’s something for everyone. I decided to make a publication sharing some photos and the routes I had explored, showing what’s possible, and to hopefully encourage them to try the walks themselves.” – Erika Cann

So if you’re planning a visit around Dartmoor National Park and considering how to get around, we hope you’ll pick up a booklet or if you’re planning a holiday, you can view and download a copy here and enjoy the superb sights of Dartmoor!

Commenting on the project, our Chief Executive, Rose O’Neill said:

Experiencing the natural beauty of a National Park, like Dartmoor, is an awe inspiring experience. It brings significant health and well-being benefits to people, enriching their lives and relieving pressure on the NHS and other services.

By securing legal reforms we can remove barriers such as local transport options to our protected landscapes and ensure that everyone gets to enjoy more of these beautiful places for generations to come.”

That’s why we are calling for governments in England and Wales to commit to:

1.    New legislation to enshrine equal access to National Parks alongside nature recovery
2.    Support for farmers to deliver more public access
3.    Investment in public health initiatives to connect people to National Parks.

The next few weeks and months will be crucial as we look to win over even more support and everyone’s voice counts – including yours. You can pledge your support, and sign up for receiving more information about joining our campaign for legislative action

To find out more about the New Perspectives Bursary scheme, which gives a platform to those voices less heard in our National Parks here.