Five photographs making up page heading Photograph of Lancaster Castle Street leading up to Lancaster Castle View of St Peter's Cathedral Photograph of Millennium Bridge View of Lancaster Town Hall Ramblers Association, Lancaster Group

Lancaster Ramblers Holiday in Torquay 5th-9th March 2018

Despite the heavy snow and biting winds of the previous week, we were blessed with warm, spring sunshine to guide our walks across the stunning Devon countryside and along the impressive coastal paths.

On the first day, the coach dropped us off near Totnes and we made our way back to Torquay along deep bridleways and paths, up and down the rolling countryside towards our lunch stop at Marldon. We passed the ruins of the sixteenth century castle of Berry Pomeroy and spotted the remains of deep snowdrifts swelling the adjoining streams with meltwater before joining the John Musgrave Trail. On arrival at Cockington Hall some of us feasted on Devon Cream Teas seated in the sunshine whilst gazing at the daffodils. Afterwards, we admired the pretty, thatched cottages in the village and then finally we made our way to the coast to walk along the promenade back to Torquay Harbour.

The following day, those on the longer walk led by Gill went by bus to Brixham and followed the coastal path back to Torquay whilst those on the shorter walk led by David Todd got off the bus at Broadsands. We walked through Galmpton, passing banks of primroses and purple violets to reach the shore path towards Greenway House, the former holiday home of Agatha Christie. Glorious camellias with blooms of varied shapes and colours lined the drive to the house. Some people went into the house to marvel at the many varied collections of china and assorted oddments cluttering the rooms.

Then we set off along the Greenway Walk to the top of the hill where we enjoyed a panoramic view of the River Dart estuary. Continuing along our way we joined the John Musgrave trail once again. A former Chairman of the South Devon Ramblers, John left a generous legacy to the Ramblers who named the scenic rambling route in his memory. From our elevated position we could see as far as Dartmoor as well as down to the coast where we caught a bus home.

On the final day, both groups walked back to Torquay from the opposite direction. Those on the shorter walk got off the coach at Babbacombe and visited the amazing model village set in a valley surrounded by a multitude of different coloured conifers and evergreens. The model houses from different eras, farms, mansions, railway, villages and hospital filled the little valley along with tiny models of people. From there the undulating walk back along the cliff path offered fresh views around each corner, framed by the turquoise sea and red sandstone cliffs.

Our deep-felt thanks go to Gill Gale for organizing the holiday and leading such varied walks and also to David Todd for devising such interesting shorter walks.

Nina Brindle