10th December 2008 Ashburton.

Following what has now become an annual tradition,Ernie led this final walk of the year through the lanes and footpaths around Ashburton. ending up at the Victoria Inn, Ashburton.

The mud this year was even worse than in previous years and both Barbie and Jenni took a tumble, fortunately with no lasting damage.

After an excellent lunch, Ernie did his best to gently embarrass some of our members by recounting some of their misdemeanours throughout the year, finally awarding the “Stirring Prize” to Jo for her apparent naivety concerning the purpose of duck boards.

Heather then presented Ernie with his very own wooden spoon, hand crafted by Tim, in recognition Ernie’s own efforts over the years.

Ernie thanked Joy for taking on the task of organising the walks for next year, and Dennis graciously offered his assistance to Joy on the secretarial side.

Finally Maureen, Heather, Tim & Dave donned Christmas hats to entertain us with a rousing rendition of a topical song involving Grockles in Devon. (Regretfully I have no video record available for this memorable musical event)

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November 10th The Ogwells

If we thought the last walk was muddy, this one taught us what a muddy walk really was as Heather & Tim led us over the fields and through the woods around Ogwell.

An encounter with a large herd of cows struck terror into certain members of the group though to be fair, the cows were just as nervous of us and were desperately trying to get out of our way.

Wonderful autumn colours again and a pleasant lunch at the Jolly Sailor, Ogwell

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October 29th Bovey Tracey

Ernie organised the walk and warned us before we started that we were in for a muddy journey.
To encourage us he announced that he would be donating a prize for the muddiest boots at the end of the walk.

While we wrestled with the logic of this incentive we enjoyed a 4 mile walk along the river valley from the NT Parke office.

A crisp and sunny morning ensured we all enjoyed the autumn colours

October 15th – Babbacombe – Bishops Walk

This walk replaced the originally planned walk from Berry Pomeroy Castle which was cancelled due to it being excessively wet underfoot.

Fortunately the leaders, Ann & Colin, had this carefully researched backup ready to roll and what an enjoyable walk it turned out to be.

The weather was cloudy for the most part but this didn’t detract from the fine views over Lyme Bay
and into Torbay.

After an easy walk from Babbacombe to Anstey’s Cove, along the Bishops Walk to Thatcher Rock we returned via Ilsham Valley to Babbacombe Downs for a most enjoyable lunch at the Babbacombe Inn.

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August 20th – Avon Valley at Loddiswell

Planned by Dennis though led by Joy, this was a splendid 5 mile walk on a dull summer’s day with rain forecast.

We left the South Hams village of Loddiswell and walked past Ham Butts and Reads Farm to meet the River Avon.
We followed the river upstream for a while then crossed the river using a very interesting bridge in order to follow the old railway track downstream on the opposite bank to the Avon Mill garden centre where we stopped for coffee.

Continuing our walk via Newmill Bridge we reached the Loddiswell Inn where we had an outstanding lunch for which we were charged £6.99 for a two course meal of excellent quality.

The forecast rain duly appeared as we left the pub – much too late to spoil our day.

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July 23rd – Badgers Holt

Heather & Tim led this superb Dartmoor walk from Badgers Holt up the River Dart to Babeny then up towards Yar Tor.

Probably the best day of the year weatherwise, Blue skies, warm sunshine with a whisper of a beeze to keep us cool on the high moors.

Heather collected a few peacock feathers, Jane managed to fall into a puddle, and Alan refused to have his photo taken standing next to an old goat!

A few members continued over Yar Tor in search of the Forest Inn whilst the main party settled down for a picnic by the memorial cross before getting lost on their way back to the cars.

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June 25th – Coffinswell

Graham & Jo led this superb rural walk from Coffinswell.

Views were enjoyed across the Devon countryside from Torbay, across to Dartmoor and along the Teign estuary.
On the way we discussed the origins of the name of Coffinswell (nothing to do with coffins or wells) and Treacle mines.

The walk finished with an excellent luch at The Linnie.

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May 14th 2008 – Beesands to Start Point.

Led by Barbie (Derek taking the chuck wagon)

After some of the hottest days of the year, and despite a good forecast with Barbie cautioning us to bring plenty of sunscreen, turned out to be one of the coldest, windiest, and almost wettest walk of the year so far.
This didn’t stop us enjoying the walk and the bluebells, violets, foxgloves and gorse were out in force to greet us.

We last did in 2005 and several changes were noted. (see walks in 2005). Hallsands in particular was interesting in view of the major reconstruction works on some of the clifftop buildings, whilst the old ruined village below the cliffs allowed us to contemplate how an ill judged decision to dredge the seabed led to such a disastrous conclusion.

Photos by Tony & Dennis with archive photos from Plymouth Records Office. Music for the video is “Liebestraum” by Franz Liszt.

April 16th, Fingle Bridge,

Led by Daphne & Alan

This 4 mile walk took us through one of Devon’s most picturesque valleys alongside the River Teign after a climb out from Fingle Bridge on the northern skirt of Dartmoor.

A fairly cold day to start but with plenty of sunshine and steep bits to keep us warm.

Lunch was taken at the pub at Fingle Bridge.

Music for the video is “Panis Angelicus” sung by Andrea Bocelli. This has nothing to do with Devon scenery of course, but I like it!