Editor's Blog

Happy Christmas from Dartmoor Magazine!

As I sit and write this on Christmas Eve there’s heavy drizzle outside on the greyest of days – not the most seasonal of weather! So for a more festive feel to this blog I’ve dug out some photos which I took around Princetown in January this year, the only time I got out into any snow last winter (the images appeared in the winter 2021 issue Walk & Eat feature – and the one of the three cyclists heading off on the Nun’s Cross path came in handy when I needed photos to illustrate Nick Baker’s article ‘Dartmoor: protected landscape or adventure playground?’ which was published in the spring 2021 issue).

It’s been another odd year for everyone, but I’m happy to say that things feel back to normal with the magazine. By that I mean that advertising is just about back to pre-Covid levels (thank you to Grant at Zara Media, and to everyone who advertises with us), our loyal sales outlets are doing splendidly (the autumn issue sold particularly well) and most of the hotels which take the magazine for their guestrooms have returned to the fold. Fingers crossed that next year sees further improvement in ‘things generally’ in the wider world (it’s hard to imagine at the moment, but we can hope). I am strongly and ably supported throughout by my brother David (who has been stuck abroad for two years now) but who does the essential back office work, looking after the money side of things and the subscription database. Some of you may have noticed that his emails are often sent in the small hours – that’s because he’s on the other side of the world, not because he can’t sleep!

Huge thanks are due too to my wonderful team of contributors. A magazine like DM takes an awful lot of forward planning, and I often talk to existing and future contributors about articles that won’t see the light of day for months, or even years. Fortunately everyone who writes for DM seems to love it as much as I do… long may that last. And massive thanks to my designer Becci, who magically turns our words and JPGS into the beautiful magazine that pops through your letterbox four times a year. And thank you to Bob and Julia, who help out with delivering each issue to the 75+ outlets we supply all over the Moor and surrounding area.

Thank you too to everyone who subscribes to DM, or buys it in a local shop. The last 18 months have been really tough, with reduced income and increased expenses – as you know we have had to increase the cover price, and the cost of a subscription – but we do seem to have weathered the storm. We’ve seen a high rate of renewals with the winter issue – and since we took over the magazine in 2013 the number of subscriptions has increased with every issue, which is really satisfying. Of course we could always do with more Dartmoor lovers signing up, so please spread with word! And do let me know, as ever, if you think there’s an area of Dartmoor interest that’s not being covered: I am always really happy to receive suggestions for new articles and series.

All that remains is for me to wish you and your families a very happy Christmas and a peaceful New Year – with a little bit of Christmas cheer from Moretonhampstead!