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Dulverton Area Guide

Dulverton Image courtesy of Flickr user Cara Courage

The town of Dulverton is situated between the River Barle and the River Exe in the heart of West Somerset. Close to the Devon border, the town is widely known as the Southern gateway to Exmoor National Park. A small and unspoiled English town, Dulverton lies below the iron age hill-forts of Oldberry Castle, Brewer's Castle and Mounsey Castle.

In addition to the establishment of fairs and markets, much of the town's historic wealth was derived from several small industries such as farming and the wool trade as well as related industries. Local landmarks include a 300 year old church in the town centre and the Tarr Steps, a medieval clapper bridge made up of stone slabs that date back to 1000 BC.

The architecture of the area features medium-size properties to extravagant Georgian and Victorian houses as all as a number of post-war modern houses and bungalows towards the north of town. A large recreation ground between the town centre and the river has recently been renovated by the local community, and the town and its surrounding area have featured on national television on a few occasions. Not only did Dulverton feature as a location for a TV drama series, it was also included in a BBC programme which focused on its designation as a dark sky reserve for astronomers.

Demographics

Dulverton is a small rural area with a population of around 1,500, rising to around 4,300 when combined with Exmoor. There is a high proportion (approximately 38%) of people aged 65 years and over living in the town.

Agriculture, hunting and forestry are key employment sectors, as are the hotel and catering sectors. The ageing population has also led to an increase in social work and healthcare.

The average house price in the town stands at £253,375, which is moderately more expensive than in nearby Exmoor where the average house price is £225,349.

Education

West Somerset is one of the few areas of the country that operates a three tier education system. Two of the town's schools, Dulverton Middle and Community School and All Saints First School formed a partnership with nearby Exford First School to form the Exmoor Federation. Working closely with Dulverton Children's Centre, the schools share best practice and work together to offer consistent and unique education which incorporates the outdoor environment, for children in the area up to thirteen years old.

Upper school provision is largely provided by the West Somerset Community College in Minehead, which serves pupils aged 13 to 18 years. Pupils also transfer to secondary schools in Taunton, Tiverton, Wiveliscombe. A state day and boarding school for boys aged 13 to 17 years is available at Brymore in Cannington. Further education facilities can be found in Minehead and Barnstaple.

Transport

Due to its rural location, public transport in and around Dulverton is limited. A weekly bus service links most of the villages and towns in Exmoor, but the primary way to get around is by car.

The opening of the North Devon Link Road to the south-west of Exmoor is a key route for motorists and a favourable alternative to the narrow and winding lanes of the National Park.

There are main line railway stations at Taunton, Tiverton and Exeter with a link from Barnstaple. The West Somerset Railway from Minehead is a privately run line and does not currently offer access to the national network.

Air travel is accessible at Bristol Airport and Exeter Airport. 

Amenities and Shopping

The town of Dulverton has a range of small local independent stores offering local produce and every day conveniences as well as clothing and gifts. The town benefits from a selection of cafés and pubs, as well as a small gallery, museum and library complex. National retailers and a wider range of entertainment facilities can be found in larger towns such as Minehead and Tiverton.

Much of the areas amenities are linked to the Exmoor National Park. As well as being surrounded by this dramatic landscape, the town has its own large park and offers access to a range of riverside walks. Dulverton Folk Festival is a free local event that takes place every year in May, during the Whitsun holiday weekend.

Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure the above information is up to date, some inaccuracies may occur. If you notice any inaccuracies please contact editor@primelocation.com

All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.