Culbone Woods Heritage

Every Mile Matters because the Trail forms part of ancient and unique landscapes

Culbone Woods, between Porlock and Countisbury, is a special place where rare endemic Sorbus trees grow along the clifftops, and where the landscape has been distinctly shaped by human history. The woodlands were once worked for charcoal and deep combes (or valleys) had to be bridged to allow for horse and carts to work. Their ancient tracks now form part of the National Trail.

One of the old stone structures here bridges Silcombe Combe, just to the west of the 12th Century Culbone Church. Some of the structure is a substantial retaining wall that had in part collapsed, work was needed to prevent further collapse of this impressive historical feature.

What we did

The South West Coast Path Association provided 50% of the funding for this project which aimed to sympathetically reconstruct the historical walkway on the Trail at Silcombe Combe.

How it helped

Specialist local contractors working on behalf of our partners at Exmoor National Park completely dismantled the retaining wall and rebuilt it from the bottom up with the same techniques that would have been used when it was first built around two hundred years ago – thereby conserving the landscape here.

Total project cost: £3,207

Association contribution: £1,600

Partners: Exmoor National Park

Date completed: May 2019