Foundation & History

For several years Noel Allen ran a series of lectures on Exmoor and its Wildlife at the Further Education Centres in Minehead, Williton and Dulverton. At the end of the winter term in Minehead, early in 1974, about 30 people in the class thought it would be good to keep in touch. Noel, who in the 1940’s had been involved with the Ilfracombe Field Club, had for some time been toying with the idea of forming a similar group on Exmoor. These two ideas came together, a meeting was called and took place at the Bossington Lane home of Mike Barbee, where it was decided to go ahead. Those present at this meeting were: Mr Noel Allen, Mr & Mrs F. Frisby, Miss J. Cochrane, Miss K. Rosenau, Mrs B.E. Hover and Mr Mike Barbee.

The first Committee meeting took place on 17 Feb. 1974 at the home of Miss Joan Cochrane and Miss Kathe Rosenau at Stile, Wootton Courtenay. The name of the Society was decided upon and the Aims were to: a) Further the study and recording of the botanical and wildlife of Exmoor and b) to assist, where possible and desirable, in its preservation. (See People section for names of Committee members)

The activities agreed were:
a) Regular field excursions in the Exmoor district.
b) Monthly indoor meetings from October to April (in Minehead).
c) Collation of members’ observations and records.
d) Publication of an annual report to members.