“I see the beauty of the sea and how insignificant we all are. I feel the interconnection of the sea and the land”

“Our experience working with the lovely people from the AONB has been wonderful!”

Tabitha and Zainab, Kingswear primary school

"The great thing is sharing a wonderful day with others and just having the time to talk and listen"

Layered walk participant

“Memories of a 12 year old boy...

...my first trip on a beam trawler, BM52. I can’t forget the smell of fish and diesel. The crashing and banging of the gear, the shouting of my dad and crew, the boat continually rolling”

“When I am near the sea I am aware of the sacred continuity of time and my brief presence"

"I would like my child to grow in confidence, be able to join in, to want to be outdoors and play with friends"

Nesting participant

"Wild Parkour makes me feel free...being in nature makes me feel like I can do anything"

Wild Parkour participant

Brixham and Kingswear Peninsula Connections

During the spring and early summer of 2015 South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) were very excited to be working with many partners across organisations and local communities on the Kingswear and Brixham Peninsula.

Strengthening connections with our communities

The main strands of the project all tied into our Reconnections theme of work.

Wild Parkour on coast and woodland around Brixham

Vital habitats and a rich history

The area has high numbers of nature conservation sites with key colonies of Greater Horseshoe Bat and Guillemots as well as highly special Limestone areas that provide a vital habitat for wild flowers.

Criss-crossing the land are flyways that provide feeding ground for the bats, as well as small permissive pathways, hidden heronries, rare flowers and a mixture of farmland producing everything from eggs to beef to barley.

Greater Horseshoe Bat, courtesy of Devon Greater Horseshoe Bat project

Lupton House (centre) and estate, looking towards pinch point of the peninsula

A rich military and maritime history dates back to Napoleonic Times with Battery Park near Brixham and Froward Point near Kingswear providing key outlooks during World War 2.

Berry Head

Routeways and Connections

We were awarded a Sharing Heritage grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund of £10,000 to work with local communities in the area. We worked with Encounters Arts to develop creative ways of getting people out and exploring their local countryside, deepening their understanding and connection with the landscape.

The postcard tree, Lupton Peninsula Fair

More information about this project is available here, you can also visit Encounters Arts project pages and blogs and view their images on Flickr

Prehistoric arrowheads found on the peninsula by John Risdon

Partners in the project include the National Trust, Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust, Lupton Trust, local history groups, community groups, parish councils and residents.

What we did...

During the project we worked with 4 artists, 17 different groups and organisations and involved just over 750 participants. Find out what we did.

Children from Kingswear primary school creating song lyrics

Thank you!

We would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has been involved in this project and helped to make it the success it was. Special mention should go to the project group who helped to organise the events and activities and gave their time, energy, sites and stories:

National Trust English Riviera, Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust, Lupton Trust, Galmpton and Churston local history group, South Devon Green Infrastructure project, Encounters Arts

What next?

This project has been a great success and we are working with partners to ensure the legacy of the hard work involved. We are planning an annual series of events and taster days, working with volunteers in the area following on from the event. We hope this will take place in National Volunteers Week in 2016.

We are also bidding for funding to continue the Wild Parkour events which were attended by over 40 young people. The feedback from this was very positive and they all stated they wished to ‘do more’. We are hoping to extend this across the AONB and into Torbay, in partnership with Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust.

“The Brixham and Kingswear peninsula is a haven of beautiful places, amazing views, peace and tranquility. We can’t wait to come back.” Peninsula Quest participant

Photo credits: South Devon AONB and Shelley Castle, unless otherwise stated.