In August 1952 the small coastal town of Lynmouth was devastated by floods after days of continuous rain. The West Lyn and the East Lyn rivers burst their banks and flowed through the town destroying property and lives.
My family has now been visiting Lynmouth for 46 years, always staying the same place, a place which holds memories galore for me as I first visited it when I was 9 years old. In my adult years I have not had much opportunity to return but this April I took my aged parents back for a weeks holiday. We went in the second week of April. It was bitterly cold and we only had warmth and sunshine for 3 days, the rest of the time it was grey but at least it was mainly dry. Most days we huddled in the car with a good book and a thermos of hot coffee enjoying the views over Exmoor.
Lynmouth has changed little over the years. When we first went in 1963 it was the first year that the Glen Lyn estate had really been open for visitors after Lynmouth suffered appalling loss and damage during the floods of 1952. The Rising Sun was the first pub in the village although it now offers accommodation and rather more upmarket food. There is still a fudge shop and tea gardens. However, the appeal of the place is its beautiful location and easy access to the moors and surrounding countryside.
During the week we managed a couple of riverside walks and I spent a couple of hours each day beachcombing on the beach and trying to avoid the incoming tide – unsuccessfully – while trying to photograph the waves.
As this was probably the last visit we re-visited all our favourite haunts:
This is Lorna Doone country and the action in the book is supposed to have taken place here. Many years ago we walked up the “Doone Valley” but it is beyond my parents’ abilities now.
We re-visited Arlington Court, home of the Chichester Family. Sir Francis, the lone yachtsman lived here and the family’s love of the sea and ships of all sorts is immediately obvious from the vast collection of model ships.
Chambercombe Manor, reputedly the most haunted house in the UK