Coronavirus Update

Last updated: 13 Jan 2021

Visiting Dartmoor

New national restrictions in place from 5th January

The Government has introduced a national lockdown to control the spread of the virus.

The new restrictions permit you to exercise outdoors locally and state:

‘It is against the law to meet socially with family or friends unless they are part of your household or support bubble. You can only leave your home to exercise, and not for the purpose of recreation or leisure (e.g. a picnic or a social meeting). This should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.’

Outdoor exercise should be done locally wherever possible, but you can travel a short distance within your local area to do so if necessary (for example, to access an open space).

We know how important connecting with the outdoors is for our physical and mental health and wellbeing. Our priority is to help people remain safe – those who come to exercise and the people who live and work in the National Park.

The Government guidelines on accessing green space safely provides some good advice.

Car parks, toilets and visitor centres

National Park Authority car parks are open. If car parks are full, please do not park on verges, double yellow lines, in front of gates and entrances, narrow lanes or anywhere on the road where you will block access. Access must be kept clear for farmers, residents and emergency services.

Our toilets will remain open at:

  • Haytor
  • Dartmeet
  • Postbridge
  • Meldon Reservoir
  • Shipley Bridge

We’re asking that a maximum of two people use them at any one time to help stick to social distancing rules.

We will close toilets when undertaking enhanced cleaning measures and ask people to be patient and not to go into them while work is happening.

Our visitor centres at PrincetownPostbridge and Haytor are closed.

We kindly ask you to make a few changes to the way you visit to protect yourself and our communities, so we can all do our bit to control the spread of Covid-19. Every single action you take will make a difference. Please:

Be careful

  • Consider when you visit Dartmoor and avoid busy sites and peak times of day (between 1 and 3pm)
  • Follow social distancing rules. Keep 2 metres away from other people (where possible)
  • Wear a mask or face covering in shops
  • Clean your hands regularly – bring hand/sanitising gel with you (as there may not be hand washing facilities available) and use it after touching shared surfaces e.g. gates and stiles when walking on paths
  • Keep your dog on a lead at all times

Be considerate

  • Follow the ranger code
  • No camping
  • No barbecues or fires
  • Park in designated areas only. Make sure you aren't blocking gateways, narrow lanes or driveways
  • Take your litter home. It can harm wildlife and grazing animals and is a health risk.
  • Please cycle on permitted routes, you cannot cycle on open moorland.

Be compassionate

  • Of farmers, local communities and the vulnerable. Avoid paths through farmyards and gardens – don’t linger if you use them
  • Of the wildlife, countryside and unique landscape
  • Towards National Park rangers and staff – they are here to look after Dartmoor and those living, working and visiting
  • Towards others by sharing the space and thinking about what time you visit

Public Rights of Way

Public Rights of Way and Coronavirus (Covid-19)

National Park Authority

Our HQ at Parke remains closed to the public.

Most of our staff are now working from home. You can still reach us by phone or email in the usual way.

Contact us

Formal meetings, including Authority and Development Management Committee, will take place via video conference. Please refer to the updated calendar of meetings.

Planning service

For the foreseeable future we will only be able to receive new planning applications electronically through the planning portal website. We will not be able to deal with planning applications that are received by post until further notice.

We will be continuing to validate and process applications where possible and will keep you informed where there are any problems or delays. See our planning advice page.

Our Communities

During this difficult period it is vital that we support each other and reach out to communities in need, which is why we have launched the Coronavirus Community Support Grant (CCSG).

The scheme rapidly provides grants of up to £500 to voluntary and community groups to help them tackle the impacts of the outbreak and help those who are most vulnerable.

Find out how to apply for a grant

Dartmoor Businesses

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is already impacting business on Dartmoor and has the potential to significantly impact our rural economy.

Whilst we as a National Park Authority are not in a position to provide legal advice or to provide public health advice, we can help share the various resources available for local businesses. These are available on the Business page.