Here we are on day three of our
seven-day five-day break here in Devon. Last night felt like the Cottage might take-off with the gales blowing for most of the night. A quick inspection this morning revealed that there wasn’t any damage and everything of significant weight was still where we left it! (The car… the dustbins… me!) 😁
A quick peek through the curtains revealed a much better day than yesterday – at least it wasn’t raining and the Sun was out!
With the prospects of an improved day weather-wise, we’re attempting to visit Kingsbridge, Salcombe, Dartmouth and Brixham. One thing we were immediately reminded of down this way is the width of the roads (or lack of!). I guess the locals are used to it, but it certainly made my driving a lot more cautious (no bad thing!). In fact, we were on the road for a total of 2½ hours today – but only covered 62 miles!😮
9.30am: Let the games commence…
10.10am: On arrival at Kingsbridge, we parked in the Quay public car-park and it immediately started to rain! We dressed accordingly and headed up the fairly steep hill to where the shops are. It was a busy town, with a wide range of small outlets together with an above-average quota of wine shops! (fine by us!)
Just as we reached the summit, out came the Sun! Briefly anyway!!!!
After a couple of small purchases (knives and Port – always a useful combo!), we made our way back to the car, just as the clouds gathered (again!), and I took the opportunity to take a shot of the quayside. It wasn’t at its best given the weather and the low-tide revealing miles of mud!!!
I also noticed a small memorial near to where I took the above photograph. It was a small memorial to the Salcombe Lifeboat disaster of 1916.
11.18am: Back in the car, we headed for Salcombe, just a 20 minutes’ drive away. Again, a mixture of Sun, rain and more rain kept us company during the journey!!! As we descended some very steep hills into the town, the weather briefly improved and by the time we’d parked right opposite the harbour, our prime position allowed us to get some great photographs within minutes of our arrival…
11.45am: All that sight-seeing meant we were ready for a coffee and some nibbles. Luckily, right next to where we parked was The Wardroom Café, already very busy when we arrived, and I think we got the last table!
12.05pm: Time to move on… Next stop? Dartmouth!
Operation Tiger Memorial/Slapton Sands Monument
12.40pm: By now, the weather was at least dry – the rain had given-up and been replaced by force 10 gales! It was so windy, it was difficult to even hold the camera-phone still to take photographs – a real challenge!
As every good history scholar knows, the memorial and monument commemorates those who gave their lives during 1944 in the rehearsal for the D-Day landings involving 30,000 US servicemen. There is much to read about this tragedy on the internet and the event remained withheld from the public for many years.
1.20pm: …and when I said: “next stop Dartmouth” what I really meant was “…plus anywhere else that looked interesting”. And that included the less-than-glamourous sounding (and unplanned) Blackpool Sands. All we knew, as we headed in the direction of Dartmouth, was that we could see this gorgeous looking beach to our right. We slowed down and located the entrance! It turned out to be a privately owned beach with a café alongside. Because of COVID-19, the beach was closed, but no-one was on duty, so I took a peak! As you’ll see from above, wall-to-wall sand in a beautiful secluded spot!
1.40pm: We arrived in Dartmouth, just in time for the heavens to open – it pelted it down! And then, as quickly as the rain arrived, out came the Sun. We took a look at the Harbour and took a quick walk around the town, dodging the showers (and the local contarctors re-surfacing most of the side-roads!)
Oh, what a surprise! It’s raining again!!! We took refuge in the Royal Castle Hotel and kept ourselves company with a few nibbles. Ann sampled the cheese-board, whilst I couldn’t resist the chocolate torte!
2.35pm: Suitably stuffed, we headed back to the car – and for Brixham. As we left the hotel, we had t run for the car due to the torrential rain that lasted all of 45 seconds! We now had two choices: back the way we came or take the local ferry. The ferry sounded interesting… £6 one-way… total journey time? Around three minutes and that saved us about an hour of driving! 😁
3.10pm: Hello Brixham! We probably didn’t do you justice because of the wet weather, but we did manage to get a few photographs before (again!) running back to the car to avoid the downpour.
3.50pm: Time to head back to the Cottage! We were only about 20 minutes away but it was another of those twisty-turney journeys through narrow roads flanked by tall hedges. The damp weather slowed things down even more and the lack of white lines on many of the back roads certainly demanded 110% concentration. As a driver, compared with home, I miss the wider roads! 😯
Tomorrow, I’m taking a rest from the driving, and we’re going by train to Plymouth.