Tuesday, 1 December 2015

West Country Tour - Paignton to Brixham … part 5 ...




We had had a busy day along that ancient Drewsteignton coach road researching for Jenny, pertinent to Emily Hobhouse’s relatives … our second day was to be ‘sight-seeing’ i.e. visiting the south Devon coastline … just having a look …

Paignton Harbour


My choice of hotel for Paignton was not brilliant – it was ok … and just as Jenny was saying ‘do you know where the hotel is?’ – from my print-out, it was obvious I really didn’t have a clue … no sat nav and no town map.




Crab salad
Still my trusty steed and I have faith in me!  … and ah ha – we rounded a corner and there said hotel was … it did look 2nd rate – and confirmed the statement above.  Still we had a place for the night and we were there no longer than that.






Ice-cream with toffee sauce,
meringue and cream

An adequate supper … my crab salad was good and just what I needed after the Oxenham Arms lunch … Jenny had plaice with boiled potatoes and veg – not scintillating: so no picture.  Desserts – Jenny’s favourite … and became a regular choice!  I’m not good with them … but was tempted by a treacle tart – that … was too dry … so no photo.



Saltern Cove


Paignton and Torbay would be interesting to re-visit at some stage … but I wasn’t that enamoured – however I’d like to see the caves that Agatha Christie drew inspiration for her novel “A Man in a Brown Suit” – which I have previous written about here and here.  





Geologically it has some fascinating places ... so Sites of Special Scientific Interest to see at some stage ...  Saltern Cove consists of three beaches supporting diverse communities of inter-tidal plants and animals  ... and is definitely a link I should have put in my 2014 A-Z post on Z is for Tidal Zones ... 




One part of the working harbour

We were glad to get on our way the next day … south-west along the coast to Brixham – a small fishing town, where a replica of Sir Francis Drake’s ship Golden Hind is permanently moored … an annual pirate event competes for the town with the most pirates – both are crowd pleasers.






A replica of the Golden Hind


The townsfolk watched Sir Francis Drake attacking the Spanish Armada in the English Channel - history records in 1588 … the Golden Hind is a great tourist attraction.










It is not big!  But we are invited aboard to see how Drake, 10 officers and some 60 men lived and survived in 1577.  The pirate guides were there to conduct visitors around … we stayed on the quayside.



We had a good wander around … just looking and giving the place the once over – at some stage I will go back.


Middle Street following
the edge of the harbour down
to the main fishing area



The fishing harbour still functions – but as with all smaller ports struggles with the traffic – I’m not surprised … the size of the lorries took up the road – we had to wait … awful driving for the lorry drivers – and in more crowded times of the year, travelling by four wheels must be a nightmare!



Tomorrow's Fish ... a sign that made sense!



An interesting place to have visited and if/when I go back .. I’d like to stay in the town to get more of an idea … a drive through gave us a flavour … but it has fascinating history.




Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories

47 comments:

Elephant's Child said...

My mother spend a lot of time in Devon as a child, and always remembered it fondly.
While I was never a fan of Agatha Christie's who dunnits, her autobiographies are a different matter. I would love to travel in her footsteps.
Thank you.
A dry treacle tart is an abomination though...

Vallypee said...

I don't know Torbay or Painton for some reason. Maybe I've also driven through and not been inspired. Still, on a good day anywhere on the Devon coast will be lovely. Shame about the hotel and the uninspiring food!

TexWisGirl said...

now you have me craving seafood and salt air. :) sorry the hotel and food was only so-so.

Christine Rains said...

Too bad about the hotel and food, but lovely pictures of the scenery. I'd love to go aboard the Golden Hind and check it out!

Liza said...

"Tomorrow's fish are still in the sea." Love that! Enjoyed your tour!

Jo said...

Although I spent time in Devon, honeymoon, I don't remember a lot about it. We stayed in a hotel in Beer. We did tour around but that was around 50 years ago. 10 years later, second honeymoon was in Cornwall and I ate Cornish cream and meringues for dessert every day, and every day the servings I requested got slightly better. We also ate lots of crab, and other seafood. And, of course, oggies. Sounds like the places you visited were fascinating. I didn't know the people of Brixham could watch Drake from their shores. Fascinating part of the world. Such fresh fish. Yum.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

The guide books say there are 400 sites of interest in the UK. I would think there must be 4000. Otherwise, whoever draws up the guide needs to speak to you, Hilary. Your a fountain of excellent informations on the Isle. I yearn to come back and see much, much, more. Until then, I have your blog. TG.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ EC - I'm sure your mother had very happy times here. I bought the "The Grand Tour: Letters and Photographs from the British Empire Expedition 1922" by Agatha Christie was published on 17 Jan 2013 ... as I'm sure it will be so interesting - I need to settle to read!

The dry treacle tart was unpleasant to say the least ... still my crab was good!

@ Val - I don't know the towns either ... just through 'Faulty Towers' - a classic tv programme with John Cleese. But must make a plan to visit properly. Yes on a good day life would be a pleasure in Devon - the hotel just wasn't brilliant!

@ Theresa - I remember the meals ... and then crave too! But a good walk along the coast seems like a great idea ...

@ Christine - so glad you enjoyed the post and the descriptions and photos - despite the hotel and food ... the Golden Hind did look interesting and one day perhaps I will visit again.

@ Liza ... I had to snap the sign - so true - thankfully we leave some in to another day.

@ Jo - nothing quite beats Cornish Cream and home-made meringues (preferably Aga cooked variety!). Sounds like the honeymoon with Matt was good ... with crab and seafoods and then the pasties - again - home-made ones preferably!

Looking into the history a little more has been fascinating - we weren't rushing around and so I was able to keep my eyes open for interesting blog topics ... and next time I'm down I must find their look out point.

As you say fresh fish is so good ... and the area is fascinating ...

@ Joylene - well certainly I keep finding snippets of fascinating history ... but I don't know what their criteria are ... so it's difficult.

Maybe they are sites that the Guides think would interest us for a day out ... but there are over 650 castles and I'm sure we could add to those - as how do you define a castle?

As I go round I spend my time thinking about subjects to blog about ... but I learn in the process, keep myself occupied, get to visit areas I'd never visit ... there's always something of interest ... this tour is going to go on for a while!

Thanks so much to you all - I'm getting a chance to remember things I've seen ... cheers Hilary

beste barki said...

Hello Hilary, What an incredible experience it must have been for the townspeople watching the reality of war as you would watch the history channel on TV today.

Jeffrey Scott said...

That's interesting to see the boats in the harbour, sitting waterless at low-tide. Very unexpected. Touring the boat would have been cool. And pirates! ARrrrrrrrrr
Also, I love the catchphrase of Rockfish, "Tomorrow's Fish Are Still in the Sea."

Joanne said...

Sorry you had to suffer through a second rate day to get us to an interesting one. Still a "so-so" day on a journey and not stuck in a work cubicle has to be awesome. Anyplace near water looks wonderful to me. I'm far too landlocked in the middle of TX. Thanks for the jaunt so far.

silvioafonso said...

Adorei seu blog, por isso eu
vou segui-lo.
Siga o meu também, vai!

Beijos e bom natal.




.

Suzanne Furness said...

We spent a couple of holidays in a little cottage above the harbour at Brixham (up lots of steps!) when the girls were little. Lovely place and enjoyed the Golden Hind. Lots to see around that area, hope you get to visit the caves on another visit.

Rhodesia said...

Not places I have been to so interesting for me more than if I had been there. Pity about the hotel, but it could have been much worse :-) Take care Diane

Anabel Marsh said...

I've still never been to Devon. I don't think Torbay would be for me from the sound of it (John Cleese came into my mind too) though I'd like to see the Golden Hind replica.

Southpaw HR Sinclair said...

Bummer that the hotel and food were just so-so. The town looks cool though and the Golden Hind looks awesome.

Out on the prairie said...

All the history sounds fun. I like to explore caves so now need to read agathas book .

Deborah Weber said...

I do love these little cyber road trips I can take with you Hilary. And you've inspired me to re-read Man in the Brown Suit.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

The Golden Hind is splendid!
I like the looks of your crab salad as well.

Kittie Howard said...

I winced at the "so-so" hotel and food -- it disappoints when that happens, but you carried on -- and carried me with you -- back in the day, I rode a bus through much of Devon and still see much in my mind's eye, especially the Moors (Love Dame Agatha!) but had to take the return bus to ... Exeter, I think, to pull in before dark. In so many ways your trip filled in the gaps of what I'd missed. Many thanks! And I've never figured this out: what's a treacle tart???

Ana coelho said...

Hi Hilary never been to Devon, thank you for sharing your journey the crab salad looked yummy.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Beste – it’s an interesting thought isn’t it – but I expect they didn’t know much about what was going on … though perhaps they did have a grasp of affairs of the country – more likely of the King or Queen though?

@ Jeffrey – ‘there be pirates… ARrrrrr’ – yes! Our tides have a fall of around 35 – 40 feet, but can be more. In the Bay of Fundy, Canada –the range has a maximum of 53+ feet.

I know I couldn’t resist snapping the catchphrase … just such a great sign to see …

@ Joanne – the hotel really is irrelevant if one is there to sleep, which we were … so it comes with the guess work of booking a hotel, sadly! But as you say we weren’t stuck indoors … I do need to see the sea … being in Johannesburg was almost a trial as the sea was so far away – here we are always so near … and it makes that difference.

@ Silvio – good to meet you and thank you for coming over. Unfortunately I can’t speak Portuguese.

@ Suzanne – yes … lots of steps in Brixham – that I can believe. But the cottage must have been fun – and am glad to hear you looked over the Golden Hind – that must have opened the historical door … Yes I’d like to see more of Paignton and those caves – though I think they’re pretty touristy now … still the history would be interesting.

@ Diane – I’m grateful to have visited too – and to have caught a glimpse of the area. Definitely one needs time … as the roads are really tiny and I imagine summer traffic jams often. Another hotel too!

@ Anabel – I think I need to see Torbay, though the John Cleese hotel scenario would put me off too, as the coastline there looks wonderful. Next time I must go aboard the Golden Hind and have a better look around Brixham.

@ Holly – well thankfully the hotel was for sleeping in – and that we happily did … and my salad was good and Jenny enjoyed her dessert! The little harbour was an interesting place to walk around and having Drake’s ship to check out … was fun to see.

@ Steve – the history is fun … I left out rather a lot. The caves though I’d like to look round – just the touristy tack I’m not sure about. Agatha’s book brought the scenario to light, as too Africa … as she includes that in this story line, and travelling by ship as that was the way in the 1920s.

@ Deborah – that’s great .. and as I mentioned above to Steve – the Man in the Brown Suit brings in many of Agatha’s early experiences of travel …

part 2 following

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Alex – Drake’s ship does stand out doesn’t it. I was happy with my crab salad too!

@ Kittie – well the so-so hotel and food were going to happen sometime – when we were travelling to so many places … and it’s pin the donkey tail on the internet: I got it wrong that time!

That’s great you had the experience of riding the bus through Devon and back to Exeter – that’d have been right … it is a central point for transport in Devon. Glad I filled in some of the gaps from your youthful travels.

See my post on “T” for Treacle Tart – and George Orwell … in my 2013 A-Z … http://positiveletters.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/t-is-for-treacle-tart.html - that should help.

@ Ana – glad you’re happy to come exploring with me around Devon. The crab salad – was good!

Thanks to you all … am happy you’re enjoying yourselves accompanying me on my ‘round trip’ … cheers Hilary

silvioafonso said...

Voltei para deixar um
beijo, Hilary.

Feliz Natal, minha amiga.




.

Karen Walker said...

This seems like such a wonderful trip, Hilary. I'm going to get you to plan my itinerary next time I visit England.

Chrys Fey said...

That crab salad and ice cream look so good. Gosh, can I get that for lunch? ;)

The Golden Hind looks so neat. Sounds lIke you had a nice trip despite the so-so hotel and food.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I'd love exploring some of these tidal pools.

Stephen Tremp said...

Hi Hilary, that ice cream dish looks awesome. i want some and it's only breakfast here. And I love replica ships. Amazing they were able to cross The Pond. Many didn;t make it. But some did.

Janet Johnson said...

This sounds like a lovely trip! And even the poor hotel choices can lead to great memories. But how fascinating about The Golden Hind! So that's not a replica? The real thing? That is amazing! England is on my list of places to visit some day. Such a lovely country. Thank you for sharing and making me feel like I were there!
Cheers!

Lynn said...

I love reading your travel posts and am sorry I am late to the party! My Thanksgiving holiday got in the way. How lovely to have such good a traveling companion, too.

Murees Dupé said...

It definitely sounds like the town has great history. Actually seeing how people had lived in the ships back then must have been wonderful. The ice cream looks good. What can I say? I love good food and reading about your adventures. I learn so much. Thank you for always sharing your experiences.

Guilie Castillo said...

I'd love to spend time in Brixham, too! Sounds like a fascinating little town—and I'd totally go aboard the Golden Hind... I love that stuff. Living in the Caribbean has stoked my passion for pirates ;)

Great post, Hilary! I'm so enjoying this series :)
Guilie @ Quiet Laughter

Mary Montague Sikes said...

Hilary, you have got to put all this together into a book. You do such a great job with both your writing and your photographs!!!

M Pax said...

That boat doesn't look big enough for all those people. The pirate guides sound fun. I'd enjoy that.

Sounds like a fun little getaway to me.

Patsy said...

Considering the number of times I've been down in that general direction there are still a huge number of places I've not visited yet - Paignton and the Golden Hind among them. I hadn't even heard of Saltern Cove, but you've made me want to.

A Cuban In London said...

No sat nav, that's proper old school there. Love it. Thanks, I'm enjoying these posts a lot.

Greetings from London.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Silvio – thank you again ..

@ Karen – thanks so much … Jenny set the towns, I just chose where to stay … but I did enjoy organising it!

@ Chrys – oh I know .. the crab salad was very good … while Jenny loves her ice-cream! Yes please come over and I’ll organise it for you!

The Golden Hind did look like an interesting ship to visit … and we did enjoy ourselves …

@ Diane – the rock pools are such fun to find … so much life in them – I wrote about them in my A-Zs this year …

@ Stephen – I know ice-cream for breakfast probably isn’t a very good idea. I really should have gone aboard … but we didn’t have much time to step out of line as such. I know one looks at replica ships and thinks no way could they have travelled across the Atlantic … as you say some didn’t – but those that did opened up the world for us.

@ Janet – the good and the ‘not so good’ hotels … we had both ... but it leads to stories! Yes it is a replica … if it was real, it would be in a museum.

I’m sure you’ll get over one day … there’s lots of interesting places to see … and I’m delighted you feel you’re there with me as I relate back my travels.

@ Lynn – thanks so much … you’re not late – that’s one advantage of blogging .. you can come along any time.

Taking time out for Thanksgiving is so important … and Jenny is great to have around – a real live-wire …

@ Murees – the harbours and villages along the southern coast do have lots of history. I must go and look round the Golden Hind one day … to just experience the size etc …

Good food and reading about adventures brings things to life – so pleased you learn bits and bobs when you’re here.

@ Guilie – delighted you’re enjoying the series … Brixham does have lots to offer … and the Golden Hind available to check out. Pirates … always good to think about … I can see the Caribbean connection!

@ Monti – you are a star … thank you so much. I’m just delighted to bring it to life for readers …

@ Mary – well exactly … heaven knows where all the crew went – let alone lived or worked, while they sailed over … hardships a-plenty. I should have checked out the pirate guides in advance for you … ?! A fun place to getaway to …

@ Patsy – oh gosh .. I hardly know the area and particularly Cornwall – seeing as I’ve visited nearly every year of my life – granted not lived there … but I’ll hear a name and not relate: yet it’s near by. Well you can travel down and find these tiny harbours, coves, beaches etc … I just suspect you will!

@ ACIL – nope … no sat nav – but Jenny knows the area fairly well, and I have a pretty good sense of where to go – much to Jenny’s amusement! Good instinct … and thankfully few maps – as we knew enough … that’s great to know you’re enjoying the posts …

Cheers to you all – so pleased you’re all happily following along with me … next stop is tomorrow! Hilary

Lynda R Young said...

Wonderful photos! You make me want to travel again!

Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar! said...

Hi human, Hilary,

I just read your latest pawst to my human, Gary. You followed a route that Gary is most familiar with and you've brought back some fond memories for him. The added history makes it all the more interesting. Thank you, dear human.

Pawsitive wishes and doggy kisses,

Penny xx

T. Powell Coltrin said...

I've been trying for a half hour to get to your comment form. That and having the stomach flu for three days just about pushed me over the edge of life. :)

Your travels and posts about them, thrill me beyond measure. I get to live them through you. Thank you, Hilary!

Teresa

Marja said...

What a great trip I love ports for some reason. The Golden hind looks fantastic. The crab salad looks great.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Lynda - thanks very much .. it was a fun area to see.

@ Penny and Gary ... so pleased Gary was happy to listen to you read my travels .. and that it reminded him of happy times. Glad the extra history brings it a little to life and reminds us how much has happened.

@ Teresa - - I do hope it's not blogger causing havoc with the comment form ... Blogger can push me over the edge, let alone not feeling great on top of it .. I do hope you feel better now.

Delighted you're enjoying being with me as I travel round ..

@ Marja - the little harbours are so lovely to look out onto ... the Golden Hind was an added bonus and my crab was very good!

Thanks everyone - it's so lovely having you here - cheers Hilary

Annalisa Crawford said...

Sadly, that whole area has had little improvement since the 70s, and you can feel it - you actually feel like you're travelling back in time, and probably wouldn't be surprised if your hotel was run by Basil Fawlty himself :-)

Having said that, it was our go-to day trip when I was young. I loved standing at the end of the pier and pretending I was in the middle of the sea.

Deniz Bevan said...

Ooh, I'd love to visit the Golden Hind! So many of my characters seem to end up on these ships...

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Annalisa - yes you're right it was rather 'tacky' ... I'm not at all sure who was running the hotel - it had gone into recession and out of season mode!

Well it's not far from the Plymouth area .. and I'm sure had lots of exciting things for the kids to do ... including pretending they were in the middle of the sea!

@ Deniz - I expect Emily would enjoy the pirates! I must go round the ship next time ... there really wasn't time ...

Cheers Hilary

Dianne K. Salerni said...

Fantastic photos! I love the idea of visiting a replica of the Golden Hind. Francis Drake is one of the more fascinating characters in history -- defeating the Armada, rescuing colonists at Roanoke, sailing around the world, etc, etc.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Dianne - gosh I'm late here too ... Some photos I'm sure are mine, but one or two are not. I must get on the Golden Hind next time ... incredible entrepreneurial skills came to the fore in the 1500s - Francis Drake being one of them. He was a risk-taker who succeeded, and yet someone who knew what was important in those years .. helping so many.

Thanks for reminding me about Roanoke ... cheers Hilary