By: Blonde Two

Blonde One and I had a meeting the other day. It was a real, actual meeting with an agenda and for once not in a minibus, behind a bush, on top of a Dartmoor tor or in a chilly tent.

We talked about all sorts of business things, workshops, opportunities, The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (excited about that starting up again soon), books and money. Then we got onto even more important things like what to wear in various places, how to remember somebody’s name and how to eat spaghetti (the conclusion to that one was, ‘don’t do it in company’).

And then I asked Blonde One a question. I suspect she is the only person in the world who would say ‘yes’ to this question and it concerned a walk. Are you ready? Here it is…

‘Would you like to go and find some vermin traps?’

You wouldn’t say ‘yes’ would you? In truth there is at least one other person who would enjoy this excursion because he gave me the list of grid references for said vermin traps. They are all on Dartmoor and they are very interesting because they are an important part of Dartmoor’s history. Rabbits were bred both to feed people and to sell for meat and skins. If you have ever read Watership Down, you will remember the disconcerting warren where rabbits were fed well and lived in dry, comfortable burrows, but mysteriously disappeared from time to time. This was a fictional example of something Dartmoor has plenty of, pillow mounds or artificial rabbit warrens.

There are lots of ‘rabbity’ names on Dartmoor, Headland Warren Farm, Ditsworthy Warren, Warren House Inn, Conies Down and Peter Rabbit Tor (maybe not the last one). It is not unusual to find a vermin trap near to these warrens as stoats and weasels, although useful for catching rabbits were also very good at eating them when they shouldn’t have been.

Anyway, we Blondes are off hunting vermin traps tomorrow, maybe not the most ladylike of pursuits but I have worn a dress twice this week!