East Devon Pebblebed Heaths Trust

A network of seven commons and one moor form the East Devon Pebblebed Heaths which, at 2,800 acres, is one of the largest remaining areas of lowland heath in England.

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East Devon Pebblebed Heaths Trust

The rarity of the landscape, along with the richness of the wildlife, has earned the heaths special European and national designations including Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), Special Protected Area (SPA) and Special Area of Conservation (SAC). The heaths also form part of the East Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).

The heaths are home to rare species of flora and fauna including 24 types of dragonfly and damselfly, rare butterflies including the pearl-bordered fritillary and silver-studded blue. Notable heathland birds include the fast flying hobby, the nocturnal nightjar and the elusive Dartford warbler.  

The East Devon Pebblebed Heaths Conservation Trust is a charity which employs full time wardens to look after the heaths and implement their Heathland Management Plan, developed in conjunction with Natural England. The wardens work throughout the year maintaining the heathland by activities such as scrub and bracken clearance, cutting firebreaks, maintaining paths for walkers and supervising selective grazing by cattle. Conservation volunteers also play an important part in the maintenance programme. Without careful management, heathlands would deteriorate into scrub, and this valuable habitat with its rare animal and plant species would be lost.

The considerable cost of the ongoing maintenance work is met by the Trust and Clinton Devon Estates, helped in part by funds and grants from the DEFRA Higher Level Stewardship.

In 1930 the Estates signed a deed allowing the public access to the common for air and exercise. Today it’s estimated that around half a million visits are paid to the commons each year by walkers, riders and cyclists.

For further information about the East Devon Pebblebed Heaths, please visit www.pebblebedheaths.org.uk

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Do what you can to elevate your profession. It is an honourable one

– Robert Lipscomb, Steward 1865 – 1892

But our power for good or evil in this world’s affairs in a countryside is enormous

– Robert Lipscomb, Steward 1865 – 1892

…and the Lord Clinton was, by the whole Council, brought to the King’s presence, who after like thanks was given, was pleased that he should be made High Admiral of England and one of his Privy Council…

– Official record of appointment of 9th Baron Clinton as Lord High Admiral for life on 4th May 1550

Handing over something more valuable than we have today,

– Estates ethos

to set out against the Scots, the King’s enemies and rebels

– Instructions given by Edward 1 to John de Clinton on 8th April 1298, prior to him leading the Royal army to victory at the Battle of Falkirk. As a direct result the Clinton Barony was formed on 22nd July 1299