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Sunday, November 06, 2005

ANOTHER WINTRY BEACH: A few days in Croyde Bay

This weekend was spent in Croyde Bay, North Devon, staying at a ‘Holiday Camp/Village’ (Butlins style thang) owned and run by UNISON. The camp itself is clean tidy and .. well.. sanitised, nothing particularly great about it, but it is set in the village of Croyde, which is located in an area of Devon renowned for its surfing.

For several miles in each direction there are quiet little villages free from kiss me quick hats and slot machine arcades, but for every fudge shop have two surf shops. And as one local said to me, the surf in the summer is quite good but this wintry, blustery weather is when the real surf is whipped up. And a walk along the beach that backs onto the camp proved him right. The breakers were forming several hundred yards out, forming ferocious white chargers for the surfers to tame, or at least try to, before crashing in on the deserted beach.

And the surfers loved it, apart from me with my trusty camera there were three people walking dogs and about 30 wet suit clad surfers, braving the windswept misty weather in search of that elusive wave that would carry them all the way to the shore.

Unfortunately, I was there for a purpose, the little matter of some union business, so I did not have much time to wander, but I managed to get a few shots in before it got dark.

In the evening we headed into the village for a pint in the local pub, which I had expected to be a bit deserted in November. But it was standing room only and the Stone Roses were pumping out at full volume to entertain the annoyingly healthy looking punters, each one of them looking like something out of an advert for a VW Beetle or an Internet Service Provider. After a gallon or so of local rough cider it was back to base for a late drink in the camp ‘disco’, then off to my mate Billy’s room till a slightly nervous young security guard came around to tell us old fogeys to keep the noise down.

Then it was up the M5 and home, to be met by a rather tragic e-mail.


At 8:26 pm , Blogger Sean said...

Cool stuff mentioning Croyde. i've been every year now since I was born practically and despite moaning about it I still end up back for the next year. At the holiday camp too. Nice to see you "experienced" the local cider.


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