Exmoor National Park Authority has announced the launch of the 2017/18 Exmoor Hedge Competition.
The competition is aimed at the landowners, managers and contractors who actually carry out the high quality hedgelaying work for the benefit of Exmoor’s farming, wildlife and landscape.
To be eligible to apply, all or part of the farm must be within Exmoor National Park and the hedge laid during the winter of 2017/18. There will be two classes, ‘Open’ and ‘Novice’ and the winner of each class will receive £200, 2nd place £100 and £50 will go to the 3rd place. The judges include members of the Devon and Somerset Hedge Groups, who are experienced West Country hedge layers themselves. The previous year’s Open Class winners are also invited to join the judging panel.
Work carried out during the autumn and winter months has resulted in a considerable transformation along many lanes and field edges, as once-shady, outgrown hedges are cut and laid. This traditional management is crucial in order to rejuvenate the hedgerows which are iconic features of the Exmoor landscape, reflecting our cultural heritage and supporting an incredible range of wildlife. The work is very skilled and provides employment for numerous people on Exmoor during the winter months.
Susan May, Chairman of the Exmoor Trust said: “The Exmoor Trust is delighted to sponsor this competition again this year and encourages all hedge layers to enter.”
Heather Harley, Conservation Officer (Farming & Land Management) for Exmoor National Park said: “If you would like to enter the competition you have until May 4 to submit your entry form together with at least one photo of the completed hedge and if possible a photo of the hedge before work took place. For further information or an entry form please ring us on 01398 323665 or email email@example.com.”