The DNPA wanted to inform the design of a programme of training and skills development as part of the Moor than Meets the Eye initiative to assist local people to conserve and maintain the heritage of the Dartmoor National Park. The output from the research was required to support a bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund to obtain funds to support the delivery of the skills and training programme.
Moor than meets the eye is a landscape partnership scheme helping people to explore Dartmoor’s past, conserve its wildlife, improve understanding of this rich landscape and develop and share the skills to look after it for generations to come. The research needed to include the wide variety of partnership organisations which range from voluntary organisations through to those who make their living from Dartmoor such as farmers and tourism businesses.
Initially 3 focus groups were undertaken (1 with Hill Farmers, 1 with tourism businesses/representatives and 1 with voluntary organisations) to scope the range of skills to include in the quantitative stage of the research.
Following this, we used a mixed methodology approach in the quantitative stage to maximise the response rate:
- Postal surveys were sent out to all those on the Hill Farm Project database by DNPA
- Self completion surveys were handed out to volunteer staff and others
- An online survey was developed and the link emailed to members of the Dartmoor Partnership
The results were input into the funding bid and The DNPA were successful in their bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and were awarded a grant of nearly £2 million over the next five years, as part of a £3.8 million scheme of community heritage and conservation projects.