The Quantock Hills are a wonderful and popular place to bring school groups, whether it’s for formal education or simply to enjoy the fresh air. The Quantock Hills AONB Service and Forestry Commission are keen to support school groups visiting the hills and forests even developing a teachers education pack available via the AONB Services’ website http://www.thequantockhills.co.uk/education/home.html aimed at helping teachers get the most out of their visit.
The hills and forests are very much a working landscape with management practices varying from routine woodland management in the form of thinning and felling to aerial bracken spraying and heather burning. To help schools plan their visit to the area and to avoid possible conflict with any of the management operations such as the ones mentioned above the AONB Service and Forestry Commission are asking teachers to contact them in advance of their trip.
Also some Quantock sites e.g. Ramscombe, Great Wood, are very popular at certain times of the year and it is easy for more than one school to turn up and compete for the facilities over the same site. By notifying the AONB Service and Forestry Commission every effort is made to ensure double bookings do not happen and that your school is the only one visiting the site on the day.
Fortunately the AONB Service and Forestry Commission work closely together, in fact they jointly fund a Ranger who can help schools with their notification so there only need be one point of contact. Although both organisations usually ask event organisers for six weeks notification we appreciate schools may need to work on a shorter time scale but the earlier contact is made the easier it is to sort out.
It is still the responsibility of the visiting school to ensure they are covered by the County Councils insurance and undertake appropriate risk assessments for the activities that they are wishing to undertake.
For further help please contact Andy Harris, Ranger
01823 451 884 (AONB)
01278 732 319 (FC)
Georgie Grant - July 2010-->