Disabled Access on Exmoor

Special Facilities for Disabled People and Young Families on Exmoor

Moor Access Group

"Accessible Exmoor"

In 1996 the Moor Access Group was established to look at ways of making Exmoor accessible to disabled people.  They produced a guide, researched and written by disabled people in an effort to share the delights of Exmoor, "which we feel is one of the most beautiful areas of England".  
The guide covers absolutely everything for planning a visit to the area, and includes details of 11 walks, street maps of the major towns and villages with disabled toilets, car parks and level routes marked, disabled-friendly accommodation and eating houses.

The guide book is entitled "Accessible Exmoor" (A5 paperback format) & is available from:-
Exmoor National Park Authority, Dulverton, TA22 9HL

"State of the Park Report - Ch.13. Access - .pdf"


Accessible Somerset

The Accessible Somerset Awards is a County wide scheme that has been established in partnership between Somerset County Council, Mendip District Council, Taunton Deane Borough Council, Sedgemoor District Council, South Somerset District Council, West Somerset Council and Compass Disability Services. The aim of the Awards is to raise awareness about accessibility issues and recognise organisations that have made improvements in providing an excellent service for disabled people.

"Winning an Accessible Somerset Award does not necessarily mean that it will be accessible to all, but does mean that they have provided a good service to disabled people and that the public wanted this recognised".

West Somerset Area - 2009 awards:-
Accommodation winner: Primrose Hill Holidays, Blue Anchor
Service winner: Accessible Transport West Somerset (ATWEST), Minehead
A Place to Eat winner: Torre Cider Farm, Washford


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Walking for small wheels
Cycling for disabled

The Calvert Trust

The Trust specialises in outdoor activities for the disabled and have a superb centre at Wistlandpound near Blackmoor Gate on the western edge of Exmoor.


Wimbleball Fly Fishing Club

This club, based on Wimbleball Reservoir a few miles west of Dulverton, has a boat equipped for wheelchair users which is maintained by South West Water.  Anyone interested should book in advance (01837 871565) and take an able bodied helper with them.

Further reading: see our general fishing guide page

Walking with wheelchairs or buggies

Exmoor National Park walks for small wheels

10 walks, with excellent map graphics in .pdf format for easy printing:


Easy Access Walks

During 1999 The National Trust, The Exmoor National Park Authority and other countryside organisations developed three "Easy Access" sites in the Park.  These are properly constructed fairly level footpaths in beautiful locations for use by disabled people, wheelchairs, buggies etc. Horses and bikes are excluded.  A leaflet with plans of the locations is available from the Exmoor National Park, Dulverton, TA22 9HL  tel:(01398)323665

These sites are at :-  
Bossington Hill
    Webbers Post    Weir Water   Tall Trees Trail

Bossington Hill

Access is via North Hill, Minehead by road.
There are 2 routes: Long is approx. 830 metres,  short is approx. 350 metres.  Both are ideal for wheelchairs and buggies.
There are super views of the coast and the hills inland.  Some of the path meanders through peaceful birch and pine woodland leading to a stone Memorial Hut where you can sit.  The hut was erected in memory of Sir Thomas Acland of the Holnicote Estate who died in 1871, by his son John in 1878 and features some fine views inland.


    Porlock Bay and Foreland Point from the car park on Bossington Hill
View West along the coast from the car park at Bossington Hill

The Acland Memorial seat on Bossington Hill above Selworthy
The Acland Memorial seat on Bossington Hill

There is an excellent carved route guide at the start of each walk
The start by Bossington Hill car park

The path has been especially laid for narrow wheeled chairs and buggies


Webbers Post 

SW of Minehead on the road between Luccombe and Wheddon Cross via Dunkery.
The circular, fairly level path meanders through some mixed woodland (mainly pine, oak and birch) for about 800m with super views to the SW of Dunkery Beacon, Horner Wood and Cloutsham Ball.  There are a number of benches and a stone seat (another memorial to the Acland family) facing the west and this is a lovely elevated spot for everyone to watch the sun go down over Exmoor on a fine evening.

A section of the view west from the Acland Seat at Webbers Post      A beautiful man-size wood carving beside the path at Webbers Post

The Acland Memorial seat at Webbers Post


Weir Water, Robbers Bridge

S of Culbone  just off the A39,  4 miles W of Porlock.  The approach from Oare, west of the site is easiest.
This path follows a small river called Weir Water in this famous beauty spot.  There is a pick-up/set down area for wheelchair disembarkment just east of Robbers Bridge (car park at the bridge).  The site has a circular walk up the valley and back, the first section of which consists of a 100m 'boardwalk' along the edge of the river, which is e specially for wheelchairs. This leads to a level grassy meadow ideal for just sitting or picnics.  This is a secluded, peaceful spot, surrounded by moorland hills.

The "boardwalk" at Weir Water

Tall Trees Trail, Dunster

Suitable for wheelchairs and buggies:
Situated on the Crown Estate land at Nutcombe Bottom near Timberscombe, just south of Dunster.
The trail cuts through the woodland which features the tallest tree in England - a 197ft Douglas Fir.  There is a large unmade car park, and playarea.

Full details on the downloadable leaflet (.pdf) here:

The Tall Trees Trail is suitable for wheel chairs and buggies  The Tallest Tree in England
Tall Trees Trail on the Crown Estate at Dunster

Bike hire for disabled on the Tarka Trail

To the west of Exmoor is the Tarka Trail.  This is a 30 mile stretch of  'reclaimed' railway line which connects Braunton, Barnstaple, Instow, Bideford, Great Torrington and Meeth via the Taw and Torridge valleys.  The surface is excellent for bikes and is flat, so suitable for all abilities.  This provides opportunities for a great family day out.  The route runs alongside the Taw estuary where all kinds of sea birds can be seen.  Spoonbills are reputed to have been seen and you may catch sight of the occasional Egret.
The beach at Instow is another popular stopping off point.
The trail is named after Henry Williamson's 'Tarka the Otter' which was based on many locations along the Trail - the scenery and wildlife are spectacular. 

Biketrail cycle hire and shop at Fremington Quay (between Barnstaple and Instow on the route) specialises in hiring out all kinds of bike for every ability and many disabilities.  There is also a nice cafe and picnic area at Fremington.  The Quay is accessible  off the B3233 and there is a car park.
Biketrail's shop in Fremington is adjacent to the RSPB Reserve at Isley Marsh where you can see flocks of estuary birds - Wild Duck, Widgeon, Teal, Mallard, Dunlin, Curlew, Redshank, Oystercatcher, Turnstone, Little Plover, Heron, Godwit and Ringed Plovers. 

Further reading: see our general Exmoor Cycling page


The Tarka Trail near Bideford.  picture courtesy of Biketrail