Restoration gift provides refurbishment to National Trust’s Dunkery Beacon

16 Sep 2019

The highest point on Exmoor is being repaired through a donation of support from a local property company. The National Trust, who look after Dunkery Beacon, were delighted when Tregenna Properties offered to help with the work.

The beacon dates to the Bronze Age and is a large burial mound. In 1935, a cairn constructed of stone and mortar was built on top of the Bronze Age site. This structure commemorates the gift of part of Dunkery Hill to the National Trust by Sir Thomas Acland, Allan Hughes and Colonel Wiggins.

Tony Brice, Chairman of Tregenna Ventures said: ‘When I heard that the Beacon needed maintenance, it was a natural partnership for our company, Tregenna Properties, to get involved in a very practical way, it makes me feel very proud that we’re doing this.’

The work is taking place as some of the original mortar on the cairn is in poor condition, which has caused some stonework to come loose. The conservation work is in the form of re-pointing the entire beacon to prevent further damage to the structure. The re-pointing will use traditional methods and materials including lime mortar.

Tony continued: ‘I’ve been walking on Exmoor for years and I really love Dunkery. I once saw a plaque at the top of Selworthy which mentioned how important a donation had been there and I thought ‘I could do that for Dunkery!’  It felt completely natural to commit further funds to our local National Trust estate, I really value what they do to keep the area on my doorstep as beautiful as it is.’

Basil Stow, Area Ranger for the National Trust Holnicote Estate said: ‘We’d like to thank Tony and Charlotte Brice as well as their Tregenna Properties for the support. Their annual donations enable vital conservation work to be carried out on the estate. This has benefitted both the local wildlife population and has ensured that we look after ancient monuments, such as Dunkery Beacon, that are in our care.’

Work to Dunkery Beacon will commence from 16 September, visitors may notice the beacon looking different as it will need to be covered over while works take place. Dunkery Beacon sits on the Holnicote Estate which makes up 12,000 acres of Exmoor National Park.  

Hikers surveying the landscape from Dunkery Beacon (c) National Trust Images / John Millar
For more information please contact:
Lis Ford Senior Visitor Experience Officer, 01823 452192
Katie O’Neil / Mia Taylor-Jones / Zoe Fletcher National Trust SW Press Office, 01275 378452
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Image: National Trust images/ John Millar
Restoration gift provides refurbishment to National Trust’s Dunkery Beacon
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