Dartmoor Preservation Association

Save Dartmoor Backpack Camping - Appeal Fundraiser (Official)

The Dartmoor Preservation Association is backing Dartmoor National Park Authority as the official focus for donations in its appeal against a ban on backpack camping. We wish to see a rights-based not a permission-based system on Dartmoor.
raised of £100,000 target
RCN 1182974

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NEWSFLASH 10th Jan 24- Having won in the Court of Appeal over the summer, wild-camping is now threatened AGAIN in a last ditch attempt by the landowner to challenge in the Supreme Court. We will continue to support the National Park with this legal effort.

Over 2022/3, as a result of the court-case brought by a local landowner, backpack camping was made illegal on Dartmoor, overturning a decades-long tradition of responsible camping on the moor. This decision has dismayed those who love the moor and those who wish to protect that tradition of leave-no-trace camping for which Dartmoor is rightly famous.

The Dartmoor National Park Authority decided to seek leave to appeal in January, it was granted by the court in April; this means there is a legal basis for an appeal. Now the support or thousands around the world has convinced them to pursue that permission. The appeal is on!

This page is your chance to help support that appeal process. If you can support with a donation, we are so very thankful! Not only are you increasing the chances of us all being able to enjoy the beauty and power of this wild place again, but you are giving a chance for future generations to enjoy the access to the moor which we ourselves have enjoyed. If you cannot donate, please spread the word far and wide, as it's an uphill struggle in hard times to raise such a huge figure. We appreciate all the support you can give.


Background and FAQs

The Dartmoor Preservation Association is backing Dartmoor National Park Authority in its appeal against a ban on backpack camping. We want to see a rights-based not a permission-based system on Dartmoor.

How are we helping? We are acting as the focus for donations which we will intend to transfer these to the national park to offset the legal costs of an appeal. (The original case will have cost the National Park around £100,000 to give you an idea of scale).

How will the donations be used?

We will use them to fund the National Park Authority's appeal against the backpack camping ban.

These funds will only be for future appeal costs, not for costs of the original judgement in this case in Jan 23.

Until the costs of the appeal are known, we will hold these donations ringfenced. This could be until 2025.


Our responsibilities with donations

By donating via DPA you can be assured that we, as a long-standing registered charity, will act appropriately and clearly with the funds donated to us.

We have a properly established board of Trustees and permanent staff. We are regulated by the Charity Commission and answerable to HMRC, Companies House, Fundraising Regulator and our many members. (Registered Charity No. 1182974)

Our legally binding constitution requires us to use our resources only on activities that benefit Dartmoor, specifically: Public Access and Conservation of archaeological sites, cultural heritage and natural history.

We will never use these donations to fund our own operating costs. All donations will go to support and appeal and other Dartmoor access benefits. All donations are ringfenced and accounted for by our external financial examiners.

If the DNPA loses the appeal in court, we will cover whatever their costs are up to the amount of the donated funds.

What will you do with any excess donations? (for instance, should DNPA win the appeal and have their legal fees covered by the other parties)

If there are excess funds above the costs of an appeal then the DPA will use them to enable access activities on the Dartmoor aimed at youth groups and young people. Examples include:

o Moor Boots- a project to provide, for free, proper footwear and camping equipment to underprivileged children so they can take part in activities like DofE, Scouts and TenTors without the cost that would normally prevent them.

o Supporting, Nights Under The Stars - a project giving children time, funds and resources to spend a day on a Dartmoor farm to understand the role of farming in the story of Dartmoor and a camping night out for the first time. Organised and led by the Dartmoor Community Engagement Rangers.

o Year 7 discovery sessions- which gives pupils in Year 7 at the Dartmoor Multi Academy Trust time to explore and learn on Dartmoor to understand the environment they are growing up in.

o Supporting Girls do Dartmoor (GDD)- Creating safe and open spaces for young women to experience the outdoors together. GDD will help girls reap the benefits of being active in the outdoors whilst addressing barriers or stereotypes that cause girls to not pursue outdoor activities.

The purpose of these projects is to give a life-long love of Dartmoor. To give people the skills to access the moor responsibly and build respect for the landscape, its people and the many ways it is used, enjoyed and worked in.

About the charity

The DPA has been defending Dartmoor for 140 years. We promote public access, protect archaeology, prevent inappropriate development and act as the critical friend to the national park authority. The DPA own land and mange it for biodiversity . We have kept the moor wild and free for generations.

Donation summary

Total raised
+ £15,268.24 Gift Aid
Online donations
Offline donations
Direct donations
Donations via fundraisers

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