School RunDarent Valley Landscape Partnership Scheme
Two hundred years ago influential landscape artist Samuel Palmer described the Darent Valley as an 'earthly paradise'. Today he would still recognise the special qualities conveyed through his visionary paintings. It remains a landscape of surprising beauty, rich in diverse habitats and with an impressive cultural heritage.
Dartford Orienteers are one of many partners working with the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty on this Darent Valley Landscape Partnership Scheme.
This site is designed to keep club members abreast of the progress of Exercise ‘School Run’, the title covering our contribution towards the overall Scheme.
As ‘School Run’ progresses there will be a need to co-opt other members to assist in fulfilling our commitment.
This commitment can be viewed on the page holding the relevant documents.
Since 2017 a number of schools have been provided with orienteering maps and introduced to the principles of orienteering. Local permanent orienteering courses (POC) are being updated/adapted for their outdoor use. A number of teachers have attended the British Orienteering Course to further develop their orienteering skills. Dartford Orienteers continues to assist when required. Further learning resources on the development and topography of the valley will follow. Linking our work to local heritage is a key feature of our role and Heritage POC’s will be established in the local villages.
Schools Involved with the project
Churchill C/E Primary, Westerham
Dunton Green Primary, Sevenoaks
Holy Trinity Primary School, Dartford
Horizon Primary School, Swanley
Horton Kirby Primary School
Oakfield Primary Academy, Dartford
Otford Primary School, Sevenoaks
Seal Primary School, Sevenoaks
Shoreham Primary School
St Paul’s C/E Primary, Swanley
Temple Hill Primary, Dartford
Sundridge & Brasted C/E Primary, Sevenoaks
Valence School, Westerham
West Hill Primary, Dartford
Wilmington Grammar Schools for Girls
Development of Heritage Trails
“Creation of the concept of new specially designed heritage orienteering courses and events for families, that link navigation to accessing heritage features and knowledge of their relevance and importance.”
Dartford Orienteers are liaising with the DVLPS and Kent County Council for the development of an App course which will enable visitors to Lullingstone Country Park to see where they are as they visit the magnificent trees on the Veteran Tree Trail installed at the park in 2022 and on a notice board outside the Visitors Centre. This will provide an educational and fun activity exploring the park and will freely available online through the Kent Country Council and Dartford Orienteers websites.
Extend the School Development of Orienteering into Local POC’s
Direct guided interaction with heritage and landscapes is a highly effective way of communicating the importance of the landscapes such as the Darent Valley, and has proven to be an integral part of all Landscape Partnership Schemes.
Children, having learned the basics of orienteering in the school grounds, will be encouraged through formal events to develop their skills in the landscape through activities in local Permanent Orienteering Courses (POC’s). Lullingstone Country Park, Darenth Valley Country Park and Beacon Wood offer such opportunities. Some adaptation of the maps for use by schools will be completed.
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