The Cornwall/Devon Grand Tour moves into its 11th hour of travel as we land in Bideford.

All your favourites

A second day of glorious sunshine as I pulled into the Riverbank Long Stay Car Park, in sharp contrast with the downpour we saw on the Saturday.

Slight diversion : For a pint of Doom Bar (or lesser equivalent), where is this ?


Torridge Council has set aside space for campers in their car parks in west Devon, joining Bury St Edmunds on my (short) list of Clever Councils.  They’ll stop letting you camp if you leave your “mess” in the skatepark, mind.

I found a spot next to the boats.


Disappointingly none of them offered a craft beer experience like you’d find in Bristol or Peterborough or Wells.

Escape to Lundy

A lovely parking attendant told me how to get the cheap ticket (a fiver) and we shared a joke at Barnstaple’s expense, like you would in a pub (in Barnstaple). A couple of days later Barnstaple would attempt to drown me, in retribution.

Ba Ba Toure (top) was impressed with his second stop of the trip, but elected to stay and guard the campervan, which is worth about 3 tonnes of mutton.

You don’t read this blog if you go to the same Gรฎte in the Loire or campsite in Cornwall every year; you’ll read it if you get as euphoric as I do when entering the gates of Bideford for the first time.


No, really.  Give me that first visit to Bishops Auckland or Bicester or Billingham over a return trip to anywhere.

Solid shops

Actually, there aren’t gates, and the first thing you see is the Spoons (not-GBG, but…), so I popped in there.

Seen worse
Oooh, Otter Head.  The strong one

It was 31 degrees, and I had two ticks ahead, so I started with your favourite soda, which cost 65p.

Please sponsor me Mr Gunna

You’ll recognise this Spoons from almost anywhere.  What made it stand out at 4 pm on Wednesday was how quiet it was, despite being one of the Rishi days.

Spot the customers

Perhaps Devon folk don’t eat between meals or something, but they don’t drink much either, despite the chap who brought my 65p can assuring me it was “manic” last night.

Singlets and sandals

I had two ticks within walking distance.  One in the pretty village of Appledore, and (confusingly) the Appledore in Bideford, about which Facebook had told me nothing.

Lovely pub colour

It looked lovely. It was closed.  I peered through the window.  The Landlord came out and told me he had no imminent plan to re-open, being tiny and all.

Surprisingly, that was to be my only complete fail of the trip, as Devon seemed (sometimes reluctantly) to be edging back to normality.  As she shall find out next.






      1. LAF,
        Yes, Barmouth is Wolverhampton on Sea – and at Llwyngwril just a few miles down the coast I’ve known four couples that own or have owned static caravans, three from Wolverhampton and my wife’s sister and her husband from Sedgley.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. “as we land in Bideford.”

    In the photo above I see Colin Cauliflower’s Canadian cousin has made another appearance. ๐Ÿ™‚

    “For a pint of Doom Bar (or lesser equivalent), where is this ?”

    Ooh, ooh! That’s the lady of the lake!

    “Torridge Council has set aside space for campers in their car parks in west Devon”

    Walmart does that everywhere over here.

    “Escape to Lundy”

    Wasn’t that a John Carpenter film starring Kurt Russell?

    “A couple of days later Barnstaple would attempt to drown me, in retribution.”


    “when entering the gates of Bideford for the first time.”

    In the OS map below, East-the-Water? That’s not very Cornish.

    “so I started with your favourite soda, which cost 65p.”

    As my darling wife has been wont to say of late… ‘muffin’. ๐Ÿ™‚

    “Please sponsor me Mr Gunna”

    I don’t think I could ‘bear’ it if that happened. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    “Spot the customers”

    Are any of them named Waldo?

    “Singlets and sandals”

    After 13 years of living on Vancouver Island, even I haven’t gone THAT native!

    “being tiny and all.”

    Being of short stature would definitely make it difficult to serve folks six feet apart.

    “As she shall find out next.”

    Did your sister join you again? ๐Ÿ˜‰


    Liked by 1 person

  2. Devon and Cornwall. Apart from a work trip to Plymouth and Torpoint, two counties that I haven’t visited. Quite a trek to get down there and the rumors of hordes of holidaymakers have put me off.


    1. There ARE hordes, Morten, but they tend to head for the same places (Padstow, Falmouth, Mousehole, Newquay) every year, leaving some spots unspoilt.

      And the roads are dual carriageway till the last half hour so not as bad as 20 years ago.


      1. I’ll keep that in mind. And avoiding the school holidays could be good choice too. I suppose early September can still be nice and warm down there.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Darn shame about the closed pub. GBG pubs really should show more consideration for tickers – a plastic bottle take out of Doom Bar wouldnโ€™t have been too much to ask…would it?

    “Slight diversion : For a pint of Doom Bar (or lesser equivalent), where is this ?โ€

    Is it your garden in Waterbeach? Did Mrs RM forget to turn off the hose pipe when watering the flowers?

    Iโ€™ll settle for a lesser equivalent – do you have any Bass?

    Liked by 1 person

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