The Mendip Society
The Mendip Society is a group of some 700 like-minded people who come together in the interests of conserving and enhancing the Mendip Hills. Most of the Society’s members live in and around the Hills, but some live as far afield as the north of England and even Canada.
The Society co-operates with the local authorities and voluntary organisations to achieve its aims. It works closely with the management team of the Mendip Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the AONB Service and the Joint Advisory Committee.
However, the Society operates throughout the Hills, not just the parts currently designated as AONB. The Society’s campaign for designation of the Hills as an AONB, achieved in 1972, was its first major success story.
To increase enjoyment and understanding of the Mendip Hills the Society:
- Runs an extensive programme of walks, talks and visits
- Helps to keep open the rights of way in the Hills
- Encourages quiet access to the countryside
- Publishes a newsletter, books and pamphlets
- Sells books and pamphlets of local interest
- Serves on the Strategic Traffic Action and Tourism and Recreation Advisory Groups of the Joint Advisory Committee
- Runs social events and competitions.
To help conserve and enhance the Mendip Hills the Society:
- Runs a Small Grants Scheme to encourage conservation objectives through the local community
- Monitors development plans and the AONB management plan
- Advises local authorities on key planning applications, with a special watch on quarrying
- Occasionally acquires land to conserve its features and provide access
- Serves on the Planning Policy, Cheddar Gorge and Heritage Groups of the Joint Advisory Committee
- Organises on-land surveys and conservation working parties. Extensive work has recently been completed at Smitham Hill, East Harptree
- Manages the work of operating a meadow at Slader's Leigh, Winscombe
- Promotes extensions to the Mendip Hills AONB.