MAIDENCOMBE.NET AUTHOR Jim Campbell

MAIDENCOMBE.NET AUTHOR Jim Campbell
Maidencombe resident since 1960. Local historian and author of the 'Coves of Maidencombe'.
Copyright © 2013 . All Rights Reserved.

COMBE WEATHER

TIDES

CURRENT MOON

KESTREL CALLING

BUZZARD IN MY GARDEN

The bowl of the coombe as seen from Sladnor heights

The bowl of the coombe as seen from Sladnor heights

Maidencombe point

Maidencombe point
as seen above Maidencombe cove.

Blog Archive

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

MAIDENCOMBE COVE CHRISTMAS DAY SWIM: TAKE 2!

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MAIDENCOMBE COVE CHRISTMAS DAY SWIM: THIS IS IT!

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MAIDENCOMBE COVE CHRISTMAS DAY SWIM: The obligatory pre-swim photo shoot

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MAIDENCOMBE COVE CHRISTMAS DAY SWIM: The Main Event looms

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The celebrities appear on the steps preceded by Mick, the landlord of the Thatched Tavern.  Ziggy Austin, the main man and co-ordinator of the event and a special celebrity guest as Neal Taylor makes a welcome appearance.  Neal is a top swimmer for the Oddicombe Club and has won a host of national swimming titles. He is one of the all time sporting greats of Maidencombe-upon-Sea.

CAUSE FOR CONCERN

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The Environment Agency have had a look at this and considered closing the cove yesterday.

MAIDENCOMBE COVE CHRISTMAS DAY SWIM: Preview clip

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Becbla the blind vixen - A Christmas Story

Christmas Day began early for myself and So Cruise as we set off for our Night Patrol around Maidencombe just after midnight. There was an extra present in my back pack - a generous slice off So Cruise's Christmas dinner - a leg of lamb. In a fairytale world, its recipient was to be Becbla, my totally blind vixen who depended on me for food. She had gradually lost sight over a period of months, but fortunately had known me when sighted and had taken food at quite close quarters. I was only hopeful that she would be able to take this prize as many factors conspired against her on a nightly basis. She no longer came close, preferring to wait some way off and relying on me to throw her food from anything up to 25 yards. If other foxes were in the vicinity, they would dash up and snatch the food from her jaws as she was unable to defend herself. Her only advantage was her sex - a blind dog fox would have little chance of survival and would be attacked and killed. I had seen her running alongside younger foxes and was fairly sure she had been an 'auntie' in the upbringing of these younger foxes. We arrived at the designated field system just before 1 am and So Cruise, my faithful collie cross, sat and waited as I set off down the side of the hill to see if Becbla was in the vicinity. A quick sweep with a high intensity beam revealed her lying down some 60 yards away and she retreated into a hedgerow as soon as the beam illuminated her - being sensitive to light. Turning my head torch off, I advanced slowly towards the spot where she had been. About 30 yards away, I stopped and waited, knowing from experience that she would probably emerge in a few minutes time - though perhaps in a different area. I was aware of another fox watching me from higher up the field which didn't help matters. If it saw me throw the meat, it would be on it in an instant. Several minutes passed and I was on the point of giving up when the clouds cleared and the area was lit up by a 90% waxing gibbous moon overhead. Then suddenly, I spotted a movement in the hedge about 30 yards off - at the extreme range for throwing accurately. It was now or never, and I threw the meat with a whispered prayer. As the meat was still arcing in the air I whirled and shone my head torch straight at the other watching fox. Dazzled, it turned and fled. Wheeling, I could just make out Becbla searching for the meat which she had heard hit the ground a few feet away. She probed the ground for a few seconds and then I saw her lift her head with the meat in her mouth and she then immediately turned and disappeared with her Christmas meal. The whole episode had seemed to be only a matter of a few minutes, but when I looked at my watch I was surprised to see that it had lasted all of twenty minutes. I hastened up the hill to find So Cruise still waiting patiently for me. As we continued our journey, I reflected on the magical quality of the night and the oh so real Christmas Day story of Becbla, the blind vixen. Her taking of the lamb treat the best Christmas present of them all ...

Monday, December 24, 2012

Karaoke: SANTA BABY

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Upcoming:

The karaoke slot from the Thatched Tavern ...

Christmas Carols from the Thatched Tavern: The First Noel

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Christmas Carold from the Thatched Tavern: Oh Come All Ye Faithful ...

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Christmas Carols from the Thatched Tavern: Dashing through the Snow ...

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Christmas Carols from the Thatched Tavern: Hark the Herald Angels ...

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Christmas Carols from the Thatched Tavern: Good King Wenceslas

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Christmas Carols at the Thatched Tavern: Santa Claus is Coming to Town

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Maidencombe Carol Singing

A great night of carol singing in the combe last night.  I have 28 video clips and quite a few stills to process.  Hope to start getting them posted later today.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Maidencombe's Three Ships of Christmas

Our header photo shows the three Maltese flagged cargo vessels presently moored off Maidencombe.  Perhaps it is the romantic in me, but from afar they seemed like crowns - as in the Christmas carol of Reverend John Henry Hopkins Jr. 'We Three Kings'.   Will they still be there for Christmas?  That I do not know, but they are somehow symbolic moored as they are at this time of the year ...

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Christmas in Maidencombe

Upcoming this Saturday December 22nd,  a Carol Singing Extravaganza commencing from the Orestone Manor Hotel.  You are invited to join in, whoever you are, wherever you reside.  We will be meeting up at the Orestone at around 7 pm for the first stage of the Maidencombe Journey.  Mince pies and mulled wine will fortify the pioneers as they sing their first carols afore they merrily continue down aways the Rocky House Lane, always a singing as they go.  The intrepid souls will give a final outdoor rendition on the Green and then proceed a short way into the final destination of Ye Old Thatched Taverne to warm their spirits - and indeed imbibe of a little of the same in preparation for the next batch of family favourite carol singing.
Thine gracious hosts, Mick & Fiona will regale the assemblage with food and drink aplenty.  All in all, a merry and traditional evening awaits ...

Thursday, December 13, 2012

NEW DESIGNATION OF MAIDENCOMBE CROSS LAYBY

It took many months and a fair bit of effort by Maidencombe residents, but finally the new waiting restrictions are now in place at the Maidencombe Cross layby, as seen above.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

A tiring day

What with laying the trail for the Ashburton Hash House Harriers late afternoon and running it later in the evening, it was a pretty tiring day.  Some twenty hardy souls braved the sharp conditions out Labrador side and beyond the shelter of the combe. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

THE HASH IS COMING

Those strange people known world-wide as 'hashers' are coming to Maidencombe this Tuesday December 11th.  The Ashburton Hash House Harriers will 'circle up' outside the Thatched Tavern pub at 7:30 pm to get their instructions from the 'hare' who, hopefully, will have laid a trail for the hash to follow.  After the trail, the hash will repair to the bar for sustenance - as after all - hashing clubs throughout the world share the same ideal: 'Drinkers with a running problem'  ... 

Thursday, December 06, 2012

TORQUAY NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN & FEEDBACK FORM

This informative brochure plus the feedback form is available from both the Thatched Tavern and the Orestone Manor.  Maidencombe has now achieved recognition and is highlighted in the section 'ST MARYCHURCH, MAIDENCOMBE & DISTRICT'.  Maidencombe is part of the St Marychurch Community Partnership which comprises St Marychurch itself, Plainmoor, Babbacombe and Maidencombe.

There are nine Community Partnerships within Torquay and submissions from all the components make-up have been registered with the Neighbourhood Forum.  Maidencombe's submission is a concise and strong document placing safeguards on particular areas for protection.  The submission can be read on the Maidencombe Residents Association website:  www.maidencombe.org

Now is your opportunity to register your feedback on Maidencombe in the enclosed form. I will be posting a link to the form in the right hand panel.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

CATTLE NOW IN THE BARN

The sound of lowing could be heard all around the combe Tuesday afternoon as the Rock House Lane barn was occupied by cattle going into winter quarters.  Conditions regarding surface water down in the village are improving slowly.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

CLEAR SINCE NOVEMBER 27TH

I can report that the Maidencombe Cross layby has now been clear since this photo was taken on November 27th.

Monday, December 03, 2012

COMBE GETS OFF LIGHTLY

The ominous forecast of up to an inch of rain to fall on Sunday happily proved to be inaccurate as barely a quarter of an inch was recorded by my weather station (wheelbarrow on the lawn).  No appreciable increase in surface water noted Sunday night.  The combe remains saturated, however, and it will still take weeks for the watercourses to clear.

Sunday, December 02, 2012

A MAIDENCOMBE SPECIAL - Equisetum arvense

Or you may know it by the more common name of Horsetail.  Very unkindly classed as a weed,  this marvellously attractive and hardy perennial plant grows in profusion on the slopes around the cove and reputedly has legendary healing qualities for numerous ailments.

MORE RAIN INCOMING

Just as the combe was starting very slowly to drain from the floods a week ago, yet another band of rain is sweeping in from the west which inevitably will bring more flooding.  Up to an inch of rain will fall from midday today for roughly an eighteen hour interval.  Some of this rain will be very heavy so batten down the hatches and ensure the gutters outside your properties are clear.

Saturday, December 01, 2012

ASSESSING THE STATE OF THE COMBE

One thing I omitted from the commentary is that some of the water seeping out of the valley field adjacent to Home Orchard is still being fed by underground watercourses from Sladnor side.

BURNING OF THE BAMBOO MAN JUNE 5 2016

SLADNOR PARK CHALETS

SLADNOR PARK CHALETS
Eerily shrouded in mist, two of the lower chalets of Sladnor Park.

AN ODE TO SLADNOR PARK

(sung to the tune of 'Home on the Range')

Oh give me a park where the badgers can roam
Where the deer and the wildlife reside
There never is heard the developer's word
To disturb where the denizens abide

Oh give me a park where the diggers are banned
And the architect can't earn his fee
Where the noise of the town
Is a far distant sound
And conservation is all it can be

For when houses are built
The council covered in guilt
And all the animals forlorn
Now the only sounds to be heard
Are vehicles absurd
And the cries of a motherless fawn

Jim Campbell

BLOG CONTENT

BLOG CONTENT
The twinning of Maidencombe with Comeinbemad reflects the light-hearted nature of this gentle blog. The articles posted are written by the author alone and have no connection with any official body or association.

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OUR MAIN LINK - CLICK ON IMAGE TO REDIRECT

OUR MAIN LINK - CLICK ON IMAGE TO REDIRECT
THE ENDANGERED CIRL BUNTING - SYMBOL OF THE MAIDENCOMBE COMMUNITY GROUP

PUTTING MAIDENCOMBE ON THE MAP

PUTTING MAIDENCOMBE ON THE MAP

OUR LOCAL LINK

I came across this fascinating and informative guide to St Marychurch and Babbacombe recently. For many Maidencombers, these are our local shops and first 'port of call' before venturing into the urban jungles of Torquay. There's a local news feed which is regularly updated. Well worth a look. Here's the link:



CLICK HERE FOR BABBACOMBE & ST MARYCHURCH GUIDE WEBSITE

MOST VIEWED POST ON THIS SITE

MOST VIEWED POST ON THIS SITE
The old Toll House on the west side of the A379 Teignmouth Road, stands at the junction of Claddon Lane with the A379 about 50 yards from Ridge Road and the former position of the black and white Solomons Post sign (see side panel right). This early photo shows the open porch (lower left) - now blocked off and the blanked out toll-board recess (top right). Under the angled roof on the right, there is a small shop and working post office. The building probably dates from 1827 when the new road was built. Originally named Solomon's Post Gate when there was a gate across the road for the toll collector to open upon payment.

RAMBLING GROUP WRITE-UP OF WATCOMBE TO MAIDENCOMBE WALK

Found this interesting little site with a rambling group's write up of walks. CLICK HERE FOR MAIDENCOMBE WALK ARTICLE

MAIDENCOMBER SLADNOR VIDEO AND WRITE-UP

YOUR LOCAL WEB APPROVES DREAMINCOMBES

YOUR LOCAL WEB APPROVES DREAMINCOMBES
After scrutiny by a panel, this site has been added as a reputable source of information about Maidencombe.

ARCHIVE: MAIDENCOMBE TIMELINE EVENING AT THE THATCHED TAVERN

The first Timeline evening took place Wednesday evening March 20th at the Thatched Tavern. Local lad Ziggy Austin's brainchild, it was an endeavour to map out the history of Maidencombe on a ten metre paper scroll. The initiative was first mooted and widely supported on Ziggy's Maidencombe Residents Facebook page. Residents and non residents were asked if they could research local history on the area and bring along any material such as postcards or text to place on the scroll.
The first evening was well attended and as can be seen in the photos on the left, a great deal was achieved.
Longest residing villager, Alan Hunt attended to add his considerable knowledge and was supported by his 'young' student Jim Campbell with a mere 53 years of residence under his belt.
The pub opened up the restaurant area for the occasion and were most generous in providing sandwiches for the studious throng.


SOLOMONS POST AT THE JUNCTION OF TEIGNMOUTH ROAD & RIDGE ROAD

SOLOMONS POST AT THE JUNCTION OF TEIGNMOUTH ROAD & RIDGE ROAD
No known images of this iconic Maidencombe landmark. Post war and up to the late 1960's, sign posts were wooden posts painted black and white. This is a close reconstruction of the sign where buses would actually pull in to for passengers to alight or board.

A UNIQUE VIDEO

A video of one of my foxes being treated for Sarcoptic mange - taking the medication on the food by hand. She recovered completely and my thanks go out to the Derbyshire Fox Rescue who supplied the medication.

DRAMATIC EROSION OF THE SOUTHWEST COASTAL FOOTPATH

Worth a look as Maidencombe's section of the SWCP is also very much under threat.

From myfoxesandbadgers site

ARCHIVE: DANGEROUS STATE OF CLIFF FACE

ARCHIVE: DANGEROUS STATE OF CLIFF FACE
Photo taken from the beach cafe above Maidencombe cove and the arrows indicate the cause for concern. A minor land slip has already taken place and the Environment Agency had a look Christmas eve in case the cove had to be closed.

ARCHIVE: Entrance to Crossways at Maidencombe Cross

ARCHIVE: Entrance to Crossways at Maidencombe Cross
After a catalogue of antisocial behaviour displayed by motorists illegally entering a private area, the police recommended that the entrance be made narrower. A sad indictment of society.

THE FOLLY AT SLADNOR PARK

THE FOLLY AT SLADNOR PARK
Constructed between 1830-1833 by Mrs Groves who inhabited Sladnor Manor House at the time. The hexagonal tower and accompanying arched outbuilding were built of Devon red sandstone. A projecting castellated cornice crowned the gothic apertures and single faux crossbow slit at ground level. A most interesting aspect of the folly is the purpose-built pony and trap winding carriage-way which Mrs Groves carved through the north western woods of the estate to facilitate her passage to and from the folly. The structure is now in poor condition and it is earnestly hoped that Richmond Villages, the new owners of Sladnor, will be able to make safe the folly to enable residents to enjoy in years to come.

FEATURES OF MAIDENCOMBE

Some of the features we will be mentioning:

ROCK HOUSE GAZEBO
THE CASCADE
THE IRON STILE
THE CASTELLATED FOLLY
THE BAT RETREAT
THE PUMP HOUSE
THE PILL BOX
THE 190 OAK
SMUGGLER'S LANE

GRADE 2 LISTED ROCK HOUSE GAZEBO

GRADE 2 LISTED ROCK HOUSE GAZEBO
Circa 1850. Constructed of Devon red sandstone with unfortunately, as is the case with the Sladnor Folly, some cement patching. Sited at the eastern end of the garden, overlooking the sea. A single storey structure with faux castellated parapet. It has a one-window front incorporating a gabled porch on the front to left with a segmental headed and arched doorway. There is a matching arched window to the right. Reportedly, the structure had a flight of external steps for access to the flat roof with commanding views of Lyme Bay. The interior is clay-tiled laid.