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Showing posts with label salcombe. Show all posts
Showing posts with label salcombe. Show all posts

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Salcombe and Barbary Pirates

When a child, I lived in Salcombe, Devon. Until reading a Giles Milton book a few months ago, I had no knowledge of the white slave trade that saw many coastal communities in grave peril not that long ago. Barbary pirates captured people and took them as slaves to North Africa. If you lived by the coast and earned your livelihood from the sea you were in danger.

As fishermen in the 1600s, my ancestors were in grave peril.

Sunday, 11 June 2017

The letter Y

Many many years ago I attended Salcombe Boy's Club. This was back in the 1950s when I was still very young. We played indoor sports followed by a brief religious service taken by 2 very kind men.

It is funny how some things stick even 60 years later. One of these was Mr Putt telling us how life was like the letter Y. The Y has two ends at the top, like life: you frequently have to choose a direction to go in. Often there is an easier path and a more difficult one. Often I reflect and wonder what would have happened had I followed a different path in life. This is a theme I have mentioned before.

What if I had gone to a different university or no university at all? What if I had got poor grades at A level? What if I had changed jobs and moved? What if I did that PhD that I turned down? I guess we can never know. Life is filled with such Y moments, but we do not realise it at the time. Perhaps in a multiverse we do take every path, but are only aware of one?

Monday, 5 December 2016

Soar Mill Cove

This photo was taken 4 years ago in South Devon, UK where I was born.  The cliff walk from Hope Cove to Salcombe is perhaps one of the most beautiful in the world, although I am biased!

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Salcombe lifeboat disaster - 100 years ago today

See .

One hundred years ago today the small Devon town where I came from suffered a tragedy when the lifeboat (rowed with oars) overturned with the loss of life of most of the crew. Only two men survived. It was a tragedy in a small community.

There will be a special service to mark this 100 year anniversary.

One of my aunties witnessed the tragedy when she was a young girl.  Most of the crew were not young men as most of these were fighting in WW1.

To this day the RNLI crews go out in any weather to save lives. They are brave men and women.

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Salcombe Lifeboat Disaster 1916

See .

One hundred years ago this month the small Devon town where I came from suffered a tragedy when the lifeboat overturned with the loss of life of most of the crew. It was a tragedy in a small community. There will be a special service to mark the 100 year anniversary. One of my aunties witnessed the tragedy when she was a young girl.  Most of the crew were not young men as most of these were fighting in WW1. Only 2 people survived.

To this day the RNLI crews go out in any weather to save lives. They are brave men.

Sunday, 18 October 2015


I get appalled by the level of apathy in some people.

As many of you know, I was brought up as a child in Salcombe, Devon. Nowadays Salcombe is the most expensive seaside place in the whole country. The majority of homes are "second homes" and empty for much of the year. Locals struggle to afford places to live.

And yet....

When planning applications come up it is very unusual for locals to object. I write to the planning people but it seems I am a lone voice. Actually I don't know why I bother. If the locals are not prepared to use their democratic voice and if they don't care why should I? It seems apathy will result in Salcombe becoming a ghost town. Soon they will wake up to no bank, no post office, a very poor bus service and all tradesmen living elsewhere. I can see the writing on the wall, but it seems the locals do not care.

Saturday, 10 October 2015

Lifeboat Disaster Book

100 years ago next October, there was a disaster when 13 of the crew of the Salcombe lifeboat were lost at sea. One of my aunties  (Aunty Kitty) remembered this when she was a child. The RLNI has a book out about the disaster. In those days these brave men rowed out in very rough seas

See .

Friday, 7 August 2015

Rowing the Atlantic

Some fly across the Atlantic in a few hours. A few choose the hard way and row across! 2 young boys set off from New York back in May and made landfall in Salcombe, Devon this week. A great many turned out to welcome them back, including BBC South from whom this video came. They are the copyright owners.

Friday, 16 January 2015

Where I lived as a child

As I child, I was brought up in Salcombe, Devon. To this day it remains a very beautiful place. This video by Birds Eye View Productions shows Salcombe from the air with videos created by drones.

Saturday, 1 November 2014

The "new" Tides Reach Hotel, Salcombe, S.Devon

South Sands is about 2 miles out of Salcombe, S.Devon. There is currently a proposal to redevelop the Tides Reach Hotel located there at a cost of £13.5 million. If successful, the locals are hoping more jobs will be created for locals, but most hotel work attracts immigrant workers on minimum wages, shipped in from outside the area. It is very unlikely to provide many jobs for real locals.

To my mind, it looks a typical Spanish hotel like those found on the costas - grossly out of keeping with the surroundings. Salcombe is in danger of being developed in such a way that its unique identity will be forever lost.

If you want to see the proposals and comment see: 

I can see the hotel being converted to luxury apartments at a later date.

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Spare £1.95M anyone? Landmark, Salcombe.

See .

This fine "Arts and Crafts" house, which was once owned by author Paul Gallico, is on the market for £1.95million.  I fear the developers will simply sell to the highest bidder and the site will be extensively redeveloped, mainly for greed and a quick profit. The sellers own sales literature even says, "Possible redevelopment opportunity". It is pretty clear what they want.  This is a very fine house, which should be kept as it is. It has real history with it once being Paul Gallico's home where many of his books were written. It is a rare gem.

See . This building should be listed and developers prevented from making "a fast buck" by selling such houses! Salcombe is rapidly being ruined by the greed of those with no real interest in the town.   Already locals are being priced out. In 20 years Salcombe will be dead - just a playground for those with "loads of money" and very little sense. My dad used to call them the "Hooray Henry" brigade. You know the type. Salcombe is beng bought up by those earning silly money such as Premier League footballers and bankers and the like who earn millions in bonuses for basically gambling with OUR money. Sorry, but I get very angry when I see good, hard working locals unable to afford to live in their own town.

I have no idea whether listing a building that is on the market is possible or not. To try, write to .

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Widegates, Kingsbridge Estuary, S. Devon

This is a matter dear to my heart. I come from this area and love it dearly.  Because of  my poor health, I have been unable to get to Devon at all this year.  

There is a proposal to allow water skiing in part of the Widegates area of the Kingsbridge Estuary.  This is an area of special scientific interest and at low tide a place where waders congregate. It is an area that is peaceful and quiet and of international importance.

If you know the area and want to comment, write to the Salcombe Harbour Master

Personally, I am against the proposal. I fear the area will be adversely changed for ever. 

Water-skiers are pulled by fast boats which create lots of wake and lots of noise. I may be wrong, but I fear the area will never be quite the same again if the plans are approved. The "for it" campaign people have got lots of  publicity on the TV and in the press. There is a need to counter this. For democracy to work, the voices of both sides need to be heard.

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Salcombe (free) webcams

There are two (may be more?) free webcams in Salcombe that I enjoy looking at from time to time. On one occasion my brother phoned me whilst standing by the webcam! One is outside "Captain Morgans" cafe by Whitestrand carpark. The other is the view from South Sands. The link is to the one in town.

See .

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Missing "the promised land"

My dad, who died in 1987, used to call Salcombe in the South Hams of Devon "the promised land".  Whenever we returned from being away he would say "the promised land" out loud in the car. Maybe to him it represented real home, security and a freedom, away from the horrors of WW2 in those dark years before 1945.

Because of my illness, I have been unable to get to the South Hams this year, so far.   I really miss it.  It is, without doubt, the best place on Earth. Some of the unspoilt coastal walks are just spectacularly beautiful. I hope to get back there before too long.

Friday, 11 July 2014

Missing South Devon

Usually, we go back to South Devon at least twice a year and stay with my brother who still lives in the South Hams. This is where I was brought up as a child (Salcombe and Kingsbridge). This year we have not been back because of my stroke sadly.

I get very emotional these days (stroke) and thinking of "home" - my dad (who died in 1987) used to call it "the promised land" - makes me fill with tears. I shall get back there again before too long, I very much hope. Strange how thinking of the South Hams makes me tearful, but it does.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Salcombe planning decisions

In the past few days I have been posting on one of the Salcombe groups on Facebook (SPQR), urging the locals to be proactive in local planning decisions, making sure all applications are 100% legal and in the best interests of the town. It is no use people moaning after everything has been approved.
There are no accusations of past wrongs. Rather I am urging locals to look to the future and make sure everything looks good for the town. In the past several planning decisions were, arguably, not in Salcombe's longer term best interests.

At a recent council open meeting just 3 members of the public bothered to turn up. With apathy like this, they deserve what they get!

Monday, 26 May 2014

Ruined view (Salcombe, Devon)

This view, out towards Bolt Head, has all but been RUINED by insensitive development on what was the Marine Hotel. Slowly but surely developers, keen to make a profit, are destroying Salcombe as it once was. It was a uniquely beautiful seaside town, but is rapidly becoming a smaller version of Torquay.

In 20 years at this rate it will be ruined unless locals put up a fight to save its character.

On Facebook I have been encouraging locals to get more active in local politics as this is the only way that dodgy approvals can be rejected: locals HAVE to be empowered to fight these leeches who often have no real interest in Salcombe's long-term well being. Many are only interested in selling luxury pads at inflated prices - far too much for locals - to rich wankers (sorry bankers) and professional footballers to occupy for a few weeks a year. This HAS to end.

Oh for the day when Salcombe LOCALS realise they have the power to do something about the ruin of their town by outsiders.

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Tides Reach Hotel (Salcombe) - good news!

The plans have now been made public and they please me! I was expecting a large hotel complex quite out of step with  the environment, but I am very pleased to say the developers have good plans that manage to blend a larger, modern hotel well with the existing surroundings.

See and look for the display boards from the Cliff House public exhibition held yesterday. I am well pleased this is not going to be an ugly concrete mess.

Designers - thank you, and well done!

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Salcombe (South Sands)

Some days ago I mentioned how my old hometown Salcombe was in danger of being ruined by out of character developments, mainly by profiteers from outside only really interested in profits and not the longer term best interests of the town.
Next week (May 20th, Cliff House) there is a public meeting on plans to develop the Tides Reach Hotel site at South Sands. See . This is a chance for the general public to influence the planning decisions. In my view, apathy could take over and the whole plan get approved even  though it could ruin the area. Go on-line and get your democratic voice heard or visit the exhibition and complete feedback forms!

Maybe I am totally wrong although recent planning decisions make me think the developers have BIG ideas and they are assuming the plans will just be waived through.

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Salcombe, Devon - how to destroy it

In the last few years, Salcombe is being taken over by rich bankers and the like with silly money and very small brains. Homes and flats are being sold for millions, hotels are being converted into penthouse suites, and now the Tides Reach Hotel at South Sands is being redeveloped at a cost of £12M as a boutique hotel for yet more of the stinking rich. It makes me sick.

Salcombe and harbour from Snapes Point
At one time, Salcombe was a pleasant seaside town enjoyed by many. Now it is becoming the holiday home from home (for a few weeks a year) of the rich and famous and a ghost town out of season. It cannot go on: the locals can no longer afford to live in the town. In 20 years tradespeople will ALL live out of Salcombe.

It really saddens me to see how my hometown is changing.