Saturday was my big “Greater Plymouth” exploration day.


A walk to St Budeaux, a train to Bere Ferrers, a ferry to Wilcove and a hop round Plymouth suburbs to make some serious (pink) dents into Page 116 of the Guide.

Better than it was a month ago

So what of St Budeaux, I hear you ask ?

Not a lot.  Quite floral, like a southern suburb of Luton.  Don’t change your holiday plans.

Best I could do

In the only café I looked in, an Americano was £3.40, which is Totnes prices. So I got a takeaway from the Locale version of Greggs.

Oldest rarely the best

As I paid, the lady gave me a voucher for a quid off my next Cornish pasty.

Well, be rude not to, I thought, and asked for the medium (I’m not an animal like some pub bloggers).

“That’s for your next visit !”  she said, defiantly.

So I walked out and walked in again, triumphantly.  It’s probably on CCTV or Plymouth Crimewatch.

Still cost £2.50, mind.

Not the actual train

Slightly worse value than the £3.30 for an 18 minute trip over the Tamar to Bere Ferrers. The train was packed with party animals on their way to Gunnislake, and I only just got to buy my ticket before we arrived.

How would you prefer me to pay ?” I said, weighing up the competing crimes of proffering a £20 note or using contactless.

Entirely up to you, Sir”.  He still groaned when I got my card out though.

Ten seconds later a lady who looked like Miss Marple tapped me on the shoulder.

“This is beer, deary.”  What could she mean ?


Bere Ferrers station looks like one of those Heritage Steam Train places that dominate East Angular, so I didn’t hang around.

Future micro with some pun involving trains and beer

Not much to say about Bere.  A pub, a church, a village hall, a station, a Watersports Day.

As busy as it gets

The Olde Plough opened at 11am,

Nice visual clue to name

which made me like it instantly.

But with an hour to kill I walked along the mud flats to see the locals setting up for their Watersports, which I sense mainly involve throwing mud at each other in a debauched way.

They walk on water here
Rescue boat/micro crossover

Folk who like estuary Essex will love Bere, but I decided against the long walk to Buckland Monachorum (good pub) as I was keen not to be stranded till Sunday.

Bucolic Britain

The Plough is small, and cosy, and unfussy.  I’d been on halves but this definitely felt like a Pint Pub.


Good afternoon !” said the cheeriest landlady of the trip so far.  It was 11.40am but time goes slowly here.

Local beers

One other lady was working on her laptop, which made it feel a little like Wetherspoons (joking), so I took my Half Bore out to the garden.

Had worse views

A cool, malty, fresh pint I scored 3.5+, and told WhatPub so immediately.

Lacings resemble BRAPA at Newark Northgate Station

Clearly only an outside toilet could improve this place. And there it was.


Unlike Simon, I had no need to desecrate Bere station while I waited for the 12:15.


19 thoughts on “A TRAIN ACROSS THE TAVY

  1. Stayed in a preserved carriage on Berre Ferrers Station last year run by a very enthusiastic old boy who did a great fry up breakfast
    Didn’t think much of the GBG pub but there was a classic at Gunnislake a very traditional local called the Queens Head. Home cooked food for £7 to £8 as well and plenty of it. Shame it was nowhere to be seen in the GBG as the beer was good as well.


      1. Yes very irregular trains but a superb branch line it instantly became one of my favourites and the pub at the end helped. Can’t believe on a National Rail service we still have un barriered and no flashing lights on rail/road crossings. The protocol is for the train to stop, blast its horn then proceed across the crossing at about 5mph.
        Mr Mudgie unfortunately not it was from the galley in the preserved restaurant car where there is a little cafe as well.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Tony,
        On the line to and from Pembroke Dock two years ago I experienced un barriered and no flashing lights on rail/road crossings, with the road no more really than a track, with the train stopping, blasting its horn and then proceeding across the crossing at probably less than 5mph. Stopping must be an additional recent safety requirement as it didn’t happen when I was previously that way thirty years ago. Timings would be improved, diesel saved and engine noise reduced for the modest cost of investing in flashing lights.
        The nearest preserved restaurant cars to me have been at the Spot Gate Inn, Hilderstone for fifty years. I’ve not been in them, only the pub.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. That map is starting to show a healthy shade of pink so is obviously responding to treatment. Glad you made it out of Totnes in one piece. No top 100 pubs there for you then! I had trouble getting served at that brewpub and got near vinegar at the Seven Stars so not in my top 100 towns.


  3. Connoisseurs of gherkins might like to know, that it is often claimed that pickled cucumbers were first developed for workers building the Great Wall of China, though another hypothesis is that they were first made in the Tigris Valley of Mesopotamia, using cucumbers brought originally from India.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Reg,
      And not many people know cucumber harvesters in the Tigris Valley of Mesopotamia wore close-fitting leather jackets that became known as jerkins.
      I have always thought that the availability of gherkins is why London chip shops can be better than Midlands chip shops.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I always enjoy the photos you post & was nice to see the old Hunslet engine ! I am struggling to keep up with your posts -very prolific -I missed a few days over a busy weekend & am now way behind !

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My online store sells special batteries that allow you to read posts faster, Pauline.

      Failing that, just look at the pictures. Every 200 pictures you look at earns me a large bag of Piper’s.


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