Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Clovelly . Step Back In Time

Clovelly is a place where you step back in time. Where the steep, cobbled street tumbles down past gleaming little cottages mainly in white with flowers capable of winning the Chelsea flower show. At the bottom a tiny harbour sits with its deep blue clear waters surrounded by view made in heaven.
Clovelly is stunning.
Clovelly is where author Charles Kingsley gained some inspiration over 150 years ago. He described Clovelly in a beautiful verse
" Suddenly a hot gleam of sunlight fell upon the white cottages, with their grey steaming roofs and little scraps of garden courtyard, and lighting up the wings of the gorgeous butterflies which fluttered from the woodland down to the garden."
The village has changed so little over the decades so those words could still be written as the village is today.
The village is so very old and was even mentioned in the doomsday book.
It is a little piece of Devon's  hidden treasure, from leaving the cafe and shop you head down a steep back to were the donkey's are stabled. There wasn't many people about so luckily the man who looked after the donkey's took us into the shed where they were resting.  They were lovely friendly enough. We took lots of pictures so I will write the reason they are so important to Clovelly on a separate blog.
As you step back into the past you wander along the steep cobbled streets break taking beauty of a village were time has stopped. The famous cobbled streets are known as Up along or Down along. They were originally built using pebbles hauled up from the beach, a tedious task which must have taken hours with them being laid by hand.
The harbour Quay side dates back to the 14th century.  Clovelly was once a bustling fishing port, it's been famed for its herring and mackerel.  Fishing has declined but here it is still a part of village life.
In the past centuries the coast line in these parts was rife with smuggling,  wrecking and piracy. It is a notorious part of the coast line for shipwrecks. Clovelly is deemed to have its own lifeboat the lifeboat was first launched here in the 80's.
Cars are not able to drive down to the village but a landrover service is offered if needed.
The houses in the village ate lived in. Many offer things for sale and  there is also a village pub called the New Inn. There are so a number of tea shop along with pasty and fish shops. If your in this part of the world it's well worth a visit sturdy shoes are a must and it's not for the faint hearted, there is also a need for a bit of fitness with roads and paths as steep as they are. It is quite an unique place to visit  Clovelly is owned by one family, caring for the village can be costly so there is a charge to enter to help with the up keeping of the village especially as when needed the village is repaired in the traditional way.
At the top of the village complex it the car park and the visitor centre. Here you can buy your wears, as normal I managed to find some ghost books along with myth tales and tales I'm of the devilish elves and fairy's.  There is a good range of items for sale  to look at and a decent range of snacks and food the choice is yours. I was very impressed with this place it was just a shame it rained whilst we were here. Simon found it quite difficult just thankfully the landrover service was available. Sad sometimes Simon is starting to miss out on things we do and is frustrated at things he is now unable to do.
Visiting North Devon, Clovelly is a must see.
Please see the Donkey's of Clovelly blog also. So many tales to tell.

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