Devon park where attractions include Angoras
World famous botanist David Bellamy has praised the family owners of a North Devon holiday park after they scooped his top green accolade.
The park, Noteworthy Caravan and Campsite in Holsworthy, is among just 14 of Britain’s 3000-plus parks to achieve a special distinction on top of its David Bellamy Conservation Award.
Julieann and Mark Snook-Bevis, whose park is based on their Angora goat farm, gained the extra accolade for the creation this year of a thriving wildlife pond.
They were also presented with the highest possible award, a gold, in Professor Bellamy’s annual honours for parks making exceptional efforts to protect the natural environment.
Julieann and Mark acquired the smallholding 12 years ago with the aim of breeding Angora goats and selling their mohair, alongside running courses in spinning and other crafts.
Their 70-strong rare-breed herd now regularly wins prizes at shows around the UK, and customers for the high quality wool include spinners in South Africa.
The couple, who have three young children, also have nine pitches for luxury caravan holiday homes and five pitches for the owners of touring caravans, motorhomes and tents.
Their small park attracts visitors from Britain and overseas, a growing number of whom combine their holiday with a course in learning how to spin on traditional spinning wheels.
Julieann and Mark’s careful management of the park’s natural surroundings, said Professor Bellamy, showed perfectly how a business could exist in total harmony with its environment.
He highlighted how Noteworthy sustains many wildlife habitats around the park in the hundreds of native shrubs, trees and hedging which the couple have planted.
They have also created beds of high nectar-bearing flowers which provide a valuable food source for honey bees and the many species of butterfly which abound on the park.
David Bellamy also commended Noteworthy’s harvesting of rainwater for irrigation, and its low-level illumination to reduce light pollution and enable guests to enjoy the night sky.
There was praise too for the park’s involvement with the local community, including visits by children from nearby schools to discover more about the natural world.
Earning the special distinction in the award scheme, however, was Julieann and Mark’s creation of a new wildlife pond of just under one acre in size.
The pond is already a magnet for dragonflies, kingfishers, newts and a raft of other aquatic species – and attracts many different types of resident and visiting birds.
Julieann said that the family was delighted to join a small elite of UK parks now able to boast a special distinction in the David Bellamy Conservation Awards:
“This is the first time we have entered, and our park was given a very thorough inspection earlier this year by a member of David Bellamy’s Conservation Foundation,” said Julieann.
“Achieving a gold award was fantastic, but a special distinction as well has made us very excited!
“It’s a real privilege being able to live and work in this beautiful part of Devon, and it’s wonderful to know that our conservation work is being supported by someone like David Bellamy,” she added.
There is more information about the park at www.noteworthy-devon.co.uk