Saturday, 9 July 2016
East Devon - Day 7 Thursday, 23rd June : Exe Estuary Cruise and a Return Visit to Beer
Thursday dawned cloudy but at least dry so, as planned, we set off for Exmouth in the hope of taking a river cruise along the River Exe.
The rest of the photos from the cruise were taken by D with the Canon SX50 - the zoom came in handy again!
Powderham Castle peeping out from among the trees.
I could have spent quite a bit of time exploring the River Exe - some of the villages seen from the boat looked delightful. Birds seen included Oystercatchers, Herring Gulls, Grey Heron, Curlew and Little Egret.
A few photos taken along the sea (or is it estuary?) front as we walked back to the car.
Initially, we had planned to visit A La Ronde in the afternoon but D and E decided they had had enough of houses and gardens and my suggestions of the RSPB reserve on the Exe or the walk along the River Otter in Budleigh Salterton fell on deaf ears! :(. It was decided to return to Beer and go for a walk along the coastal path.
Beer is a rather picturesque village famous for the quarries (already visited) and smugglers. Jack Rattenbury was a well-known smuggler born in 1778. He was apprenticed to a fisherman in Brixham but later returned to Beer where he spent his time fishing and smuggling. He wrote a book called "Memoirs of a Smuggler" and spent quite a bit of time imprisoned in Dorchester and Exeter gaols as well as being press-ganged into HM Navy.
Plants on walls
The cliffs at Beer are composed of chalk which was formed in shallow sub-tropical seas that covered East Devon and Dorset during the Cretaceous Period (around 70 million years ago). Elsewhere along the East Devon coast the chalk has now been eroded away leaving the older Triassic sandstones rocks exposed. But the chalk has been preserved at Beer because the chalk cliffs are folded and faulted downwards at the same levels as the older Triassic rocks. The latter rocks have protected the chalk from erosion.
Views from the walk along the coastal path
If anyone knows the id of this flower please leave a comment. I'm wondering if it is a garden escapee?
After the walk we sat to enjoy the view. Lavender and valerian were just covered in bumble bees.
I paid a very brief visit to the Church of St Michael which was consecrated in 1878 on the site of a 16th century chapel. It was built by the Hon. Mark Rolle (Lord of the Manor) and originally had a spire which was replaced with a tower for safety reasons in 1964. The church is build from Hoole Head Blue Limestone with the mullions, quoins and porch made of Beer stone. The arcades in the church are also built using Beer Stone.
Friday, 24th June
We had planned on a possible visit to Lyme Regis on the way home but when we left the cottage it was pouring down with rain so we decided to drive straight back. At least it meant we were able to pick up B's birthday cake :)