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Tozers help North Devon community secure amenity land as a buffer against development

Posted on 28th June 2021 in Rural Property & Countryside Matters

Posted by

Vernon Clarke

Partner and Solicitor
Tozers help North Devon community secure amenity land as a buffer against development

Manning’s Pit is a rather special valley on the edge of Pilton, Barnstaple that provides a ‘green lung’ for the local community as well as providing habitat for an abundance of wildlife including otters, kingfishers and bats. With the development of the local area it became more and more likely that Manning’s Pit would be built on. However the Friends of Manning’s Pit Community Group has led a save and buy campaign since 2015, with the aim of buying Manning’s Pit for the benefit of the wildlife and local community, ensuring it will stay as it is, protecting the landscape and rural heritage.

Endorsed by a host of diverse famous names from Boris Johnson to James Lovelock CBE and Michael Morpurgo, and with help from a number of organisations including, the Garfield Weston Foundation, and Barnstaple Town Council, and community fund raising money events, and the generosity of many private individuals the Friends of Manning’s Pit managed to secure sufficient funds to complete the purchase this month (June) 2021.

With links to the local area and specialist experience in rural property and charity matters, Vernon Clarke provided legal advice to the Community Group and Pilton Green Man CIO which provided the charitable vehicle to acquire legal ownership, helping ensure they could meet their goals.


“We have faced many obstacles but we never gave up, and neither did the wonderful local people who supported our campaign through all the difficult times and never lost hope.”

“We want to thank all those who so generously donated towards our fundraising campaign,” said Community Group Treasurer Tim Saunders.

“Local people will be able to walk freely in this beautiful place in the knowledge that it will remain as it is for always. It was certainly well worth the fight for, not just by us the committee members but by all our supporters with their billboards, signs and donations.” Added Chris Bulpett, Group Secretary.


To find out more about Manning’s Pit please visit the Friends of Manning’s Pit Community Group website.

Friends of Manning’s Pit Community Group


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