Denise & Adam’s Marvellous Marlborough Circular – Sunday 17th November

There were fifteen walkers on today’ s route from the Bolberry Down National Trust Car Park to Salcombe and back via Malborough, through field and along coastpath. Today we welcomed a guest, Babs from Bristol. Adam introduced her to the Club and she thoroughly enjoyed being with us.

Both Adam and Denise had to postpone  the recce of this walk due to  inclement weather, but luckily just a few days beforehand a successful recce had been completed with Kata – grateful thanks for this –  as it was a new walk devised by Adam.

Sunday’s weather was better than expected and enabled us to enjoy views of the spectacular coastline on this stretch of South West Coast Path, a little light rain in the late afternoon did not detract from the stunning scenery and the sunset over the Channel in the last leg of the walk was indeed a bonus.

Our route took us from Bolberry Down, to Soar Mill Cove, then the higher coast path to Middle Soar Farm, East Soar Farm and then to Overbecks  (National Trust and Gardens). From there down to North Sands, Salcombe for lunch.

We took the Inland route back via Malborough and East Soar Farm and eventually arrived back at Bolberry Down for around 1630 hrs.

Total distance 11.5 miles.

Adam imparted his knowledge of Overbecks House and Garden ( National Trust ) which overlooks the Salcombe Estuary. It was the home of Otto Overbeck, of Dutch descent, A research chemist by profession, he was also an accomplished linguist, artist and inventor. Credited with inventing Marmite, before it gained its trade name, his most lucrative invention was a machine to reduce the ageing process, which made enough money for him to buy the house near Salcombe. The house displays many items he invented and the gardens are splendid in the Spring.

Adam also told us of Salcombe, where records date back to 1244, a small fishing village that boasted a reputable wooden boat building industry. The arrival of the railway at Kingsbridge in 1893, connection to Salcombe by steam ferries and, in 1909, motor buses made the town more accessible to visitors and tourism replaced this with the last wooden ship launched in the1880’s. In 1944 around 2000 US Navy personnel set off for the Normandy Beaches, many from Salcombe, concrete slipways having been constructed to facilitate this.

Over the years it has become a highly desirable place to live with it’s gentle climate, charming cottages and unspoilt beaches, it now boasts more second homes than any area of similar size in Devon. As James Froude, Victoria historian, said  ‘Winter in Salcombe is Winter in name only’.

Denise had very kindly organised drinks at the Church House in Harberton, so 9 of us visited this 13th century Inn on the our way home after a very enjoyable walk.

Adam S and Denise M