Conservationist who was the first national park officer for Dartmoor and the first chief executive of the Countryside Council for Wales
Ian Mercer, who has died aged 83, spent more than half a century in countryside conservation. His work as the first national park officer for Dartmoor (1973-90) and as the first chief executive of the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW, 1990-95) had a lasting impact not only on the landscapes over which he presided but on the management of land for wildlife, amenity and public access throughout Britain.
Ian’s greatest triumph concerning Dartmoor was to initiate the Dartmoor Commons Act 1985, which established a commoners’ council to safeguard the interests of the moor and open it fully to public access. The act had wider significance, for it was the precursor of the nationwide Commons Act 2006, which also provided for commoners’ councils and enabled them to obtain environmental funding.
Source: Guardian Environment