Plans for a new lake village
I feel prompted to add to your correspondent's letter "Levels have a rich and significant history'' of May 7 and hopefully go some way to allay his concerns. It is extremely encouraging that the Heritage Lottery Fund has awarded a Stage One grant to the Avalon Marshes Landscape Partnership for the promotion of the natural and cultural heritage of this unique region. It provides an exciting opportunity to build on the success of the Peat Moors Centre.
Since the closure of the Centre last October, its former staff have not been idle. With help from our associates we are in the process of setting up the 'Somerset Lake Village Project' with the aim of developing a reconstructed Iron Age lake village in the Avalon Marshes, something which has been talked about many times over the years.
Our intention is to run the project as a Community Interest Company with support from a 'Friends' organisation, along the lines of Butser Ancient Farm in Hampshire.
As a Community Interest Company we would conduct the business for community benefit rather than personal advantage.
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We have every belief the Somerset Lake Village Project would be successful given the high demand the Peat Moors Centre had from schools for visits, which often exceeded capacity. We also had an international profile and I was contacted earlier this year by group leaders from both the States and Australia in the hoping to bring a parties again.
We are currently in the process of identifying a suitable site in the Avalon Marshes, so news of the award of this grant has come at an extremely opportune time for us. We will certainly require resources to help develop the site when we find it.
We believe we are well placed to help the Avalon Marshes Landscape Partnership achieve its aims with a project that will compliment and enhance the proposed Avalon Marshes Wetland Centre, so we look forward to supporting the partnership as it moves towards it's Stage Two application.
We would be very pleased to hear from anyone wishing to support our project by writing to us, Somerset Lake Village Project, Beonna House, St. Mary's Road, Meare, Glastonbury, BA6 9SR or e-mailing SLVP@oldboar.net.
Eddie Wills Formerly warden, Peat Moors Centre