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Meetings of the BBS - 2019

Acrocarp Workshop, Preston Montford Field Studies Centre, Shrewsbury, 8-10th February 2019

Tutor: Sharon Pilkington

Description: A repeat of a very popular workshop held in 2013 and 2016, this course will enable beginners and improvers to learn how to identify many widespread acrocarpous mosses. An intensive mixture of lectures, microscope exercises and a short excursion will provide opportunities to study acrocarps in depth. Workshop participants will also hone field skills and master some of the trickier microscope techniques required to identify species with confidence. Numbers will be limited to 12.

Cost:  £175 for a shared room or £195 single occupancy. This includes accommodation and all meals from Friday evening until Sunday afternoon.

Enquiries/booking:  Please e-mail Sharon Pilkington [ ] to book a place on this course.



Spring Meeting 2019 North Devon, 10-17th April 2019

(Download the programme here)

North Devon (v.-c. 4) is a large and varied area, with habitats ranging from the heights of Exmoor and Dartmoor to the nationally-famous sand dunes of Braunton Burrows and the impressive cliffs of the north and west coasts. There is also a lot of potentially interesting country inland, much of which has still to be properly checked for its bryophytes.


The headquarters for the week is Hallsannery, approximately a mile south of Bideford. It consists of a large country house in its own grounds, and has been booked for the exclusive use of the BBS for the week; the accommodation will be on a self-catering basis. A full description is given on the Hallsannery website (; anyone interested is advised to look at the floor plans (follow “About” and then “Links”), as the one disadvantage is that there are relatively few single rooms. As the premises have already been reserved for us, individual reservations should be made through the Local Secretary (Mark Pool; details below), who will also be able to provide further information if needed. The cost per person will be £35 per night. For anyone not wishing to stay at the headquarters, there is a variety of suitable accommodation in and around Bideford.

Local Secretary: Mark Pool (91 Warbro Road, Torquay, TQ1 3PS; email; phone 01803-316154; mobile 07787 955 455).


The details below have to be to some extent provisional, as we may need to bend to the weather (North Devon’s climate isn’t always perfect); a more detailed programme, including among other things fuller information on each site, will be available later. The intention is to meet each morning at 0900 at Hallsannery (SS 456245) prior to heading off for the various sites. Participants will see that most days involve several sites; this is largely because many of them have very limited parking, while for some their small size makes a visit by the whole group impracticable.

A number of the sites (Arlington, Brownsham, Heddon Valley) are owned by the National Trust and there will be charges for parking and (at Arlington) for admission. National Trust members will find it useful to bring their membership cards, as these allow free access and parking.

Weds. 10 April: Arrive. There will be a gathering at Hallsannery in the evening (proposed time 1930) so that (1) we can check that everyone expected has arrived, and (2) any questions can (hopefully) be answered.

Thurs. 11 April: Multi-site. Marsland Devon Wildlife Trust reserve (SS 2117 etc.); Clovelly (SS 3124); Buck’s Mills (SS 3523).

Fri. 12 April: Multi-site. Borough Valley, near Lee (SS 4846); Torrington Commons (SS 4819 etc.); Brownsham (SS 2825 etc.).

Sat. 13 April: Arlington (SS 6140, etc.)

Sun. 14 April: Dartmoor. Multi-site; Meldon (SX 5692), Prewley Moor (SX 5490) and Halstock Wood (SX 6093)

Mon. 15 April: Multi-site. Meeth Devon Wildlife Trust reserve (SS 5408); Halsdon Devon Wildlife Trust reserve (SS 5512); possibly Meshaw Devon Wildlife Trust reserve (SS 7517).

Tues. 16 April: Heddon Valley (SS 6548/6549).

Weds. 17 April: Departure.

In addition to the official venues, there is plenty of scope for freelancing; there are so many gaps in the area’s recording coverage that even brief roadside stops can be profitable! Examples of unworked tetrads are SS 22A, F, G, T and Y; SS 31A, B, C, D, E, F, J, L, P, Q, R, T and Z; SS 31A, F, K and Q; SS 41A, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, N, P, Q, V and W; SS 42D, F, G, H, T, V, W and X; SS 43Q and V; SS 44R and W; SS 51A, B, H, I, N, P, U, X, Y and Z; SS 52A, E, F, G, H, J, K, L and Q; SS 53F, J, P, U and Z; SS 54B, F, H, K, L, N, Q, R, S, V, W and X; SS 61C, D, E, G, H, I and Z; SS 62G, J, K, L, Q, V, W and X; SS 63I, J, M, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, X and Y; SS 64B, C and F. Definitely no excuse for boredom!

Maps required:

O. S. Landrangers (1:50,000): 180 (Barnstaple and Ilfracombe); 190 (Bude and Clovelly); 191 (Okehampton and North Dartmoor).

O. S. Explorers (1:25,000): OL9 (Exmoor); OL28 (Dartmoor); 113 (Okehampton); 126 (Clovelly and Hartland); 127 (South Molton and Chulmleigh); 139 (Bideford, Barnstaple and Ilfracombe).

Landranger sheets should be adequate for most purposes, but the Explorers give a lot more detail (e. g. details of footpath routes)





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