Few Days in Exmoor Country

We are just back from a few days away in Exmoor area, we stayed at first on the Caravan Club Site at Dulverton, Exmoor House, it was fantastic as all their sites are and this one was only a stones throw from the centre of town. Very handy for a pint early evening in the Bridge Inn next to the River Barle.

What a lovely town Dulverton is, situated in a beautiful wooded area, at the foot of the Barle Valley not far from where the River Barle joins the River Exe. The River Barle actually being the largest River in the region, for centuries the River powered several Mills especially in Dulverton and in the early 20th Century it generated electricity.

Before you reach the Caravan Site down Kemps Way is a beautiful Statue of Lorna Doone created by George Stephenson and given to the Town by Dr Whitman Pearson an American in 1990.

And to the left along Kemps Way just after the statue is the Headquarters of The Exmoor National Park which is housed in the Old Dulverton Union Workhouse building built around 1854.

We had a couple of walks around the Town and the Lovely Church of All Saints, Bank Square. Wonderful Church and Churchyard improved recently with the help of Lottery funding and a lot of hard work by the Locals and Dulverton Town Council

All Saints Church & Lych Gate

Lovely stain glass windows and beautifully kept inside and out.
Inside the Church is a model of HMS Dulverton, and Memorabelia from the ship, The Ships bell, Battle Honours, Badge and Name Board.
Two ships have been named HMS Dulverton after the Dulverton Hunt, the 1st launched in 1941 a destroyer, served in WW2 and was scuttled in 1943 after being severly damaged by German air attack. The 2nd launched in 1982 a minesweeper, was converted in 1997 to serve as a patrol vessel, and was decommissioned in 2004. In 2008 she was bought by Lithuania and is expected to enter service with the Lithuanian Navy by 2012.

The Town has some good shops, my favourite being the old Bookshop, Rothwell and Dunworth, not much from the outside but if you love old books this is the place to spend a while mouching. I bought a ‘Nursery Cookery Book’ dated 1929 (might be another Blog)  could have spent longer in there but had Husband & Dog waiting outside !

Wednesday we spent the day at Knightshayes Court, Bolham, Tiverton, Devon. National Trust property. it’s a Gothic Revival house and a rare example of the work of the eccentric and inspiring architect William Burges, built in 1869, it has a huge garden, lots of rare trees, the views all around from the House are magnificent, lots places for a picnic, there is a fully productive organic walled kitchen garden which is a real treat. Lots of Woodland and Parkland for you also to enjoy with your Children and the Dog too, Skye loved it. Wish more Big houses were more Doggy Friendly, we left Skye in her Crate in the Motor home (plenty of parking in the shade) while we had a tour of the House, my favourite part was the Billiard Room, then went back to all have picnic lunch, then spent the afternoon in the grounds. Had a fabulous day there, as did lots of other people as the weather was glorious all day.

Walled Vegetable Garden

Loving the Topiary

Thursday was raining all day but we still had a ride out and ended up at Tarr Steps, where we all got wet and muddy, thank goodness for wet wipes, not just good for Kids, they did a brilliant job on a muddy dog !

Tarr Steps is a 17 span clapper bridge, the longest of its kind in Britain, age not known but was first mentioned in Tudor times but the thinking is it may well be a lot older. The term ‘clapper’ being derived from the Latin ‘claperius’ meaning pile of stones. It is constructed entirely from large stone slabs and boulders.

Friday thankfully the sun was shining again, we had a leisurely ride across country and down to Charmouth, near Lyme Regis for our last night, Seadown Holiday Park, have stayed here many times before, another great site for Camping or Motorhomes & Caravans, just £17 a night, had a lovely walk down to the beach, fish and chips and a pint in the George Inn before watching Lethal Weapon 4 all snugged up in bed, perfect day before making our way homewards on Saturday.
Saw two Sparrowhawks sat on fencing at side of Dual Carriageway on A35, within half mile of each other on way back, amazing birds.
Popped in to Kingston Lacy, National Trust again before we got home and had our picnic lunch there and a lovely long walk all through the woods.
That’s the beauty of being a NT member you can do as much or as little as you want.

Till next time then…………………………………………….

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