You Write

Accoring to the BBC's website the Lynton goats "get into the cemetery and eat the freshly laid flowers, which upsets the residents very much."   This, I very much doubt is within their power. Best wishes and good luck to the goats

Gerry Dunlop

I saw the piece on BBC Breakfast this morning about the goats tiptoeing across the £40,000 cattle grid. This appears to have flat bars, whereas these grids used to have round ones, which are much harder for goats to tiptoe across (without a long balance pole)

Steve Eyre


We strongly support your efforts to harness the overzealous planned actions of the local council, which will result in upto 75% of the VoR herd being culled.

We derive great pleasure from spotting the goats when walking in the Valley, which we regularly enjoy when visiting my parents in North Devon.

Good luck and please let us know if there are any other ways of assisting your campaign.

Andy,Allegra & Shannon (aged 8)

Perhaps those ‘residents‘ who claim the goats are a pest should be reminded that the goats were in residence LONG before ththe human residents. Home owners knew about the gots before moving into the area. WHY should the goats suffer???? It is the humans that need educating. If they don‘t like the goats THEY should re-locate.


We have been a regular visitor to Lynton for nearly 30 years and love visiting the Valley of the Rocks and seeing the goats. We were shocked to see today what the local council proposed - we do appreciate that goats can be a problem - (we keep them as pets), but they are part of the history of the area and there must be sensible alternatives to a cull - as you say, fencing and cattle grids must be the way to go. You have our full support and we are pleased to see that the council have deferred a decision until all views are considered. We hope that the goats will still be there when we visit next month. Lynton is a wonderful area and does not need this sort of bad publicity, resulting from views of a small minded section of the population.

Stephen Welch

I’d like to register my protest against the proposed goat cull.

Me and my wife have visited the area several times and we’ve always enjoyed visiting the Valley of the Rocks, enjoying the tranquility, the views and the yes, the goats.

We’re appalled at the prospect of a cull and feel this is viewed as the cheap option by the council.

If this action is taken, we will protest by not visiting the area again. I have discussed this with friends and they said they’d be willing to take their tourist money elsewhere too.

If it helps, you have my permission to pass my name and this message on to the council or anyone else.

Kind regards,

Anthony Duhig.

Have spent the day fuming over the proposed council cull or relocation of these creatures, just because a few poofs cant tolerate a bit of wildlife in their gardens. Needed to say that we are right behind you. and will be sending strongly worded protest mails to the councils involved. heres hoping they make the 'right' decision and leave the creatures be.


As a past visitor to Lynton over a period of several years in the 1990s, I was disturbed to hear on the national news this morning (28.4.05) about the proposed culling of the goat herd in the Valley of the Rocks. I would like to say that myself and my family enjoyed numerous walks along the cliffs edge and were always surpised and delighted by the sight of the goats munching on the greenery. We would be distressed to learn of any culling of these goats and would just like to add our voices to any protest there is to such a move. We also intend to visit later this year and very much hope to continue to enjoy this vista.

Serena Evans & family

The BBC had an item about goats today. Most every year we stay in Lynton for a week or two. One of our favourite evening walks is around the cliffs to the Valley of the Rocks, where the sight of the goats is a welcome reminder of history and heritage, and a relief from our otherwise sanitised and technological environment. However, of late, we have noticed the amimals much further down the path towards the town, and can imagine the locals unrest. It seems to be a balance between local feelings and tourism (upon which presumeably the town largely depends). Consequently we say keep the goats (or relocate a few) and fence the gardens!

Jane and Denis Drown - Canada

Data needs to be collated on the impact and numbers of goats grazing in the valley, before management policy is formulated and implemented.

Grazing is necessary to maintain the landscape in the Valley.

Are 25 goats sufficient to manage the environment?

The Town Council should accept the offer of £30, 000 to fence - although goats have been proven to jump higher than four feet, a fence of this height may contain them as long as there is sufficient grazing and shelter within the fenced area.

If fencing proves to be unsuccessful at acheiving an acceptable level of containment, then the reason why needs to be discovered. E.g. Is it because the population is too large for the area; the attraction of grazing; shelter; supplementary feeding by locals, or some other factor.

If it is found that the population is too large to be sustainable, moving some goats could be considered as a solution rather than culling - there are bound to be people who will gladly offer them a home, and they could be used to manage and improve other habitats that are suceeding to scrub through undergrazing.

I accept that culling is a valid (and sometimes necessary) management technique, used to acheive habitat management objectives, However, it should not be a first recourse, and should only be considered if no other viable solution can be found.

Sarah Hill

Student - Wildlife and Countryside Conservation

Have just seen the article on Coutryfile BBC. The goats have every right to be there. People are doing many times the environmental damage of the goats yet we don't consider culls for them. Wake up Lynton Council - you are the biggest hypocrites of all.

Alastair Scott

I watched the Countryfile item on Sunday 22nd May 2005 and  felt I needed to express my feelings. The Town Council would not have a beautiful area which many people visited if it was not for the goats continuiously grazing the area. The council and Cricket club should take the £30,000 that has been offered to them. The problem will not go away by culling, other measures need to be looked at to prevent the roaming of the goats.

Maybe the residents need to be reminded of the wonders of the countryside they live in, even with a bit of goat poo!

A Countryside management student

{I think the problem is mainly what is going into the goats and not what is coming out of them but I do agree that fencing is an important part of the solution.  I think most local people realize the privilege it is to live in such a beautiful area although some may need to be reminded of their responsibilities for preserving it. - Ed.]