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

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Entrance to Maidencombe Church

Pictured above is the stone entrance which led down to the 'fabled' Maidencombe Church which existed in 1906.  Research still ongoing to the denomination and history of this building which is rumoured to have been of wooden construction and only lasted for a few years.  You would walk past this historical entrance without a passing glance but it is, however, the last remnant of a very important structure within Maidencombe.

SEAFOX-7 GONE!

Speculation regarding the presence of the sophisticated Seafox-7 rig in Babbacombe Bay close to the Emsstrom has ended as the rig is now en route to Holyhead.  Apparently the seating of the vessel on the seabed was down to stability while the vessel was cleared to her destination.  Exciting while it lasted though ..

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Seafox-7 appears to be operational

video
The Seafox 7 is a self-elevating accommodation and maintenance support unit which can operate in water depths of up to 45 metres.
As well as being suitable for supporting installation activities in the offshore wind farm market, the unit can be used for the installation and construction of platform ‘decommissioning activities’.  It can also be utilised by oil and gas industries.
The state of the art accommodation includes a  gym, satellite entertainment system with hospital and laundry facilities as well as a helicopter deck.
It is possible that the rig is merely passing through but the destination appears to be Torbay

Strange vessel anchored close by the wreck of the Emsstrom

Bit of a mystery with the mooring of the Seafox 7 (pictured above)  about a nautical mile north of the exclusion zone around the wreck of the Emsstrom.   The rig is able to extend to 40 metres - well within the scope of the wreck which lies in 23 metres of water.  Unable to find any news at the moment of the orders of the vessel but the coincidence of the proximity to the Emsstrom is intriguing to say the least.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Maidencombe Manor in Claddon Lane

Formerly named Parkfield,  Maidencombe Manor is situated  on the east side of Claddon Lane below the English House.  I dropped by for a chat with the owners, Dave and Jenny who have been in residence for some eleven years.  Unsure of the age of the main house, but the window configuration and chimney stacks suggest turn of the 20th century. 
After the boundary changes of 2001, Maidencombe Manor now rests on the south western boundary of Maidencombe (St Marychurch Ward).  And as Dave reminded me, it is the first and last place in this part of Maidencombe selling free range eggs!  Livestock also available at times.  Thank you again, Dave and Jenny for receiving me so kindly.

Monday, February 25, 2013

The Slopes cleared again

Top photo looking down from Brim Hill, western side.
Bottom photo looking from Cades Path, eastern side.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Oberleutnant Bieber - scourge of South Devon shipping

Anyone strolling Maidencombe beach on the evening of September 16th 1918 would have witnessed the sinking of the Lord Stewart - a 1445 ton armed merchantman (converted collier) - en route from Cherbourg to Barry.   At 8 pm in the evening, she had just passed Hope's Nose,  some 11 kilometres offshore when a torpedo hit her on the port side.   The merchantman sank in just four minutes but with only one fatality. The author of her destruction was the infamous Kaiserliche Marine U-boat commander Oberleutnant Thomas Bieber who prowled the South Devon coast and  was responsible for 35 ships being sent to the bottom of the sea in the First World war.
Any lesser U-boat  commander would not have attacked the Lord Stewart on sighting no less than three Royal Navy warships escorting her across Lyme Bay.  When you consider that there were 134 U-boats operational in WWl  and  a total of 192 ships sunk by them,  it is nothing short of remarkable that Bieber notched up 35 'kills'.
The Lord Stewart was, however, the last ship to fall foul of Bieber as he and all of his crew were lost just two days later when UB 104 struck a mine in the North Sea and the scourge of the South Devon coast joined his victims in Davy Jones' Locker. Bieber was just 28 years old.












Bitterly cold out on the cliffs


'One Eye' approaches 1 am this morning for some chicken scraps. (Photo courtesy of Myfoxesandbadgers site)

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Maidencombe Toll House at Solomon's Post

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.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

BRIM HILL TIMELINE

Prior to 1924 the swathe of land to the east of Brim Hill (then named Maidencombe Road South) was predominantly orchard and woodland with no dwellings to clutter the landscape.
To the west of the lane, Osborne Villa (now Bowden Close) and Brimhill Villa viewed the sea and were only overseen by the majestic Applegarth Villa (now Orestone Drive).

Then on May 14th 1924, an application was received from a Mr G J Nickels for a bungalow 'The Bungalow' in Maidencombe Road South.  This was subsequently renamed 'Wendy' by Mrs Nickels and is the sole remaining prefabricated bungalow in the combe today.

On December 10th 1924,  another application for a prefabricated bungalow (with a larger footprint than 'Wendy') was submitted.  This was 'Croft' now demolished and is the existing site of  'Coombe Hayes' - immediately below 'Wendy'.

Third bungalow to be built  in 1925 was 'The Cove' above 'Wendy'.  The framework of the original semi-prefabricated structure still exists after refurbishment.

'Home Orchard' came into being in 1929 and was the largest of the prefabricated bungalows.  It was demolished and the house built near to the original structure bears the same name today.

Just above Home Orchard, another bungalow 'Byways' came into being in 1931.  This was a more substantial building and stands today renamed 'Mouse Cottage'.

The following year, 'Bryn' was  built next door to 'The Cove'.

In the same year, 1932,  'Barnhayes' (one word) was built by one Mr H Nickels.  Subsequently renamed 'Barn Hayes Country Club' and then Barn Hayes Country House, as it is today.

In 1933, 'Headlands' was built and at the same time, 'Dawn' came into being, courtesy of Messrs Nickels and Sanders.

A few months later, the last house to be built in Brim Hill (as it was now named) was 'San Souci' which is now renamed Coombe Close.

 So, there you have it, the time line and brief history of the evolution and order of buildings in Brim Hill Lane.

Maidencombe in 1904 showing the absence of any dwellings in Brim Hill or Maidencombe Road South as it was then named.


Saturday, February 16, 2013

Nickels Reach clear-up

A major hedge-cutting and tree-felling operation underway in Nickels Reach, Brim Hill.  Several mature trees have been felled.

Zoom to the wreck of the Emsstrom

video
In poor light and lying some three miles off Hope's Nose and about the same distance from where I was, you can make out the marker buoys flashing blue and orange directly over the wreck of the Emsstrom.  The  Greek flagged cargo vessel Anangel Ocean is moored awaiting orders barely a quarter mile from the buoys.  The wreck's location is right on the boundary between Tor Bay (Torbay) and Babbacombe Bay.  The impressive zoom is courtesy of my Canon Powershot SX40.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

NEW PC INSTALLED

Bear with me, my ancient Windows XP PC with impulse power RAM only has upset me for the last time.  Just installed a brand new Windows 8 system and though it works brilliantly, I am stumbling around trying to learn the new functions.  Updating later ..

Gritting lorry cruises the combe

Returning from our nightly walk around the combe, So Cruise and I had reached our gate when we heard a large vehicle coming up Brim Hill at 12:50 am.  I was surprised to see that it was a council gritting lorry spreading the road.  This is the first time that the roads in the combe have been gritted this winter to my knowledge.  Presumably the council must have strong weather information to initiate this expense.  I would have bet against it.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Strange lights off Hope's Nose

A few residents have remarked on the strange flashing lights approximately one nautical mile east by north  of Hope's Nose.  A configuration of four lights flashing orange and blue every second has been observed for many nights now.  These lights are in fact warning marker buoys directly over the site of  former German Naval training ship Emsstrom which sank at 1 pm on Monday January 14th.  The wreck lies in fairly shallow waters at about 23 metres with only nine metres clearance and might possibly be a hazard to shipping.  A statement has been issued by the Secretary of State's representative establishing a temporary exclusion zone in a radius of 500m around the 80m long shipwreck.

Local divers have expressed keen interest in the new wreck but have been warned that they will be breaking the law if they dive on this wreck.  There is a possibility that a salvage attempt may be attempted.
This evening the Greek flagged cargo vessel Anangel Ocean is moored awaiting orders a mere quarter of a mile east of the marker buoys which seems to be a deliberate choice by the captain.  How long these 'ornamental' lights have to stay is debatable at this stage.

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.