All About the Wild One Nighters Project

This section contains everything you need to know about the Wild One Nighters Project

Wild One Nighters (WON) is a project dreamt up by three friends (Stu, Paul & Joe) from the National Marine Aquarium in Plymouth. We were originally trying to find a weekend which we all had free, so we could cycle the Devon Coast to Coast together – it turns out we couldn’t, and the whole thing kind of grew from there…

Fundamentally, Wild One Nighters is perhaps best described as ‘an adventure travel blog, without the travelling’. In a nutshell, it’s a series of 52 camps in Plymouth and the surrounding area, each selected for their unique traits and accessibility to working folk with busy lives on a standard weeknight.

 

Homelessness in Devon

Since the initial conception of WON, we’ve been keen to raise awareness around homelessness so we’ll be spending part of the project focusing on what it means to be homeless, and finding out what we, and anyone reading this, can do to effectively help people in this situation. You’ll find out more about this side of the project in the Helping the Homeless section of the website as it develops.

 

Wild camping is not permitted in most parts of England and Wales.

Almost all land is privately owned, and permission must be sought to camp on any given plot. Doing so without permission and detailed awareness of site ownership and use can pose risks to the campers, land owners, and in some cases, the sites themselves.

With this in mind, there are only two guiding principles for the project (and anyone else who is inspired to try something similar):

Be Respectful

  • Ensure you know who owns the land, & seek appropriate permission before camping
  • Follow any byelaws or site specific requests from the owner
  • Avoid open fires unless you have express permission from the landowner to do so
  • Leave as little trace of your presence as possible the next morning.

Stay Safe

  1. Tell someone where you’re going, and when you’re expecting to be back
  2. Ideally, take someone with you – go with a friend!
  3. Research your site carefully, visit it in daylight first if possible
  4. Check the weather beforehand; make sure you have appropriate equipment
  5. Be sure to take enough food, clothing and first aid supplies to deal with any unexpected events.

 

It’s no coincidence that project features exactly 52 locations.

We’re not tying ourselves to doing one a week officially (I for one, have plans to be away from Plymouth for more than 7 consecutive days next year!), but the goal is to have averaged one wild night per week by the end of the year.

There are a couple of ideas on the shortlist which are date or season specific, like watching meteor showers, or requiring snow on the ground for example, but lots can be done at any time. The idea is to take advantage of opportunities throughout the year, and experience life after dark the whole year round.

There’s one big rule about When, and that is:

Each WON has to be on a week night, with work both before and after it. (So, Monday-Thursday night)

 

And finally…

Originally we started out on this journey because we were trying to squeeze a bit more adventure into already busy lives. No doubt that we’re going to hit that goal, but it doesn’t stop there – We’ve been on a couple of reccies whilst putting the list together, and it’s really become apparent that the WON project is going to be about rediscovering the world around us. By day the places we’re using are all too familiar, many of them have faded to become the barely noticed backdrops of our daily lives, but by night they take on a whole new, evocative, exciting, unknown character.

Travelling is too often about seeing new places in old ways. Wild One Nighters is about seeing old places in new ways.

For us, and hopefully for you too, WON is about rediscovering and exploring the world around us. It is squeezing one more adventure into the gaps between the hum and the drum. It’s about getting out there and having fun…. and on that note – let’s get going!

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