The Friends of Manning's Pit

This is the website of the Friends of Manning's Pit Group, which has led the "Save Manning's Pit" campaign since 2015.

 Help us continue protecting these fields near Barnstaple, North Devon  from future threats.
They have been loved by generations of Pilton people from the writer H H Munro (Saki) back in the 19th Century to the whole community in the present day.

November 2018 Update

Why we have much to celebrate, and why the war is not over yet.

In March, the Planning Application for 41 houses in Manning's Pit was withdrawn.

In September, Manning's Pit was listed as an Asset of Community Value.

In October, the Local Plan was adopted, with Manning's Pit outside the development boundary. This means that it would be extremely unlikely for any planning application to be successful during the next five years.

And finally, this month, came the news that the land owners did not ask for a review into the Asset of Community Value Listing – they had an 8 week period in which they could have done this.

These are indeed great victories to celebrate, but we cannot say we have won the war and saved Manning's Pit until the fields are owned by the community, or an organisation that would protect them on a permanent basis. That is our goal, and we will carry on working towards it. 

Onwards and Upwards!

Two recent quotes from our Facebook Page show the spirit:

"I will support Mannings Pitt forever! If I win the lottery I will buy it for us all!"
M. Y.

"We didn’t start this campaign to just stop it and rest on our laurels, we won’t go away until we know it is definitely saved for our grandchildren and the generations to follow.  Onwards and upward!"

Butterfly image link to information about
                          poetry competition The Inaugural Manning's Pit Poetry Competition

Entries are now closed! Prizewinners will be notified when Judging is completed at the end of December.

There will be a Presentation Evening for Prizewinners at St. Anne's Chapel in Barnstaple on Saturday January 12th. Julia Bird will come from London to give out the prizes.

More about Julia, our Judge.

Our Facebook Page for news/photos/videos/Twitter

Big Autumn Party - Report

Our Blog - includes message from India

Endorsements from prominent environmental and cultural figures, including Sir Richard Eyre, Ken Loach, Michael Morpurgo and James Lovelock.

Upcoming Events/Calendar


How to donate

Local business support


The History and Culture of Manning's Pit:

H H Munro (Saki), Colonel and Mrs Hibbert, F. R. Lee, R.A, Henry Williamson and
 Benjamin Manning

  How the Local Community feel
about Manning's Pit

Maps and Information -
Manning's Pit Fact File

Map of area

  Our Campaign

Lance Housley

Our Policies
including  link to our
Data Protection Policy

Videos and Films

Martin Haddrill has produced this song for us, and he sang it at our Big Autumn Party to great applause. We have had paintings, films, poetry and historical exhibitions but until now we haven't had a song, which is something we wanted right from the start. So we want to give a big thank you to Martin, and hope that this song will help us carry on the  battle through the years to come.

Below are links to Martin Kemp's wonderful films, that have been such an influential part of our campaign. Click on the titles to see the films on Vimeo.

The Magic of Manning's Pit, in which local people talk about what Mannng's Pit means to them

and The Battle of Manning's Pit, where Brian Norman and John Norman recite the poem of that name that Brian wroite about a childhood battle that took place back in Manning's Pit in the 1940s.



  Manning's Pit and messages of support from around the world,
including China, Australia, the Falklands and the Arctic!
Zoom in for Manning's Pit itself, and Pilton posters and signs.

A page of posters