Finally we found evidence of Beaver activity on the river Otter near Otterton Mill after looking in vain for the last few years. Lots of chewed branches and it looked as if branches had been placed across the stream to encourage their endeavors. https://www.facebook.com/pg/branscombeholidaylet.co.uk/photos/?tab=album&album_id=2376555939074414
Fabulous walk and views in April sunshine along the coastal path at Golden cap https://www.facebook.com/pg/branscombeholidaylet.co.uk/photos/?tab=album&album_id=2376555939074414
It’s a while since I posted in here but the waves down on the beach were so dramatic I had to post this video.
Today was calmer. We found a great circular walk round Colyton, though woods, heathland and along the river.on this site.
The river was high so there was a blip when we came to a ford which was uncrossable, luckily there was a footbridge a short walk down stream
June 2016 blog
Devon greater horseshoe bats project
Devon Wildlife trust have a new appeal to save horseshoe bats in Devon. They return each year to the place they were born and raised. Unfortunately damage to the roosting site puts the entire colony at risk. They need meadows, grassland, hedgerows and abundant wildflowers to provide rich feeding grounds near their roosting sites. The appeal is for work in East Devon and the South Hams. We were excited to see that one of the sites where work will be done is Southleigh and Beer quarries near Branscombe.
Whats on in August
Beer Regatta 6th to 13th August
Beautiful days festival, Escot Park: 19th to 21st August
Pecorama, Seaton; locomotive event featuring locomotives from all round the country: 22nd to 26th August
Otterton Mill music events every Thursday in August
Killerton gardens: variety of school holiday fun; all August
Seaton Tramway holds birdwatching trips through Seaton marshes and Colyford common on 12th and 28th August, booking essential.
Peregrine falcon in Branscombe, Devon
April 2016 blog
Really excited to hear that out guest at Easter spotted a peregrine falcon. we saw one when walking on the clifftops 5 years ago but havn’t seen one since. It was an amazing sight, like the stealth bomber of the skies. The speed was incredible and we took these photos as it swooped back and forth and caught a poor, defenseless pigeon.
Visited Branscombe again after the winter storms. it was a beautiful sunny day and unusually the beach had not changed much this year from previous years. The sea was calm and the sand beginning to show at the waters edge.
The Sea Shanty cafe, which won a 2015 award from the Tourist board, and serves lovely food
was open for half term and is remaining open at weekends.
On the way down to the beach, along the footpath the hedgerows have all been layered by the national trust. The layering is using traditional methods and looks very beautiful opening up the views of the surrounding countryside. The National trust website includes descriptions of some of the fabulous walks in the area as well as ideas of places to visit and a video of the area.
The weather was mild and there were the first signs of spring with snowdrops and even daffodils out in the roadside hedgerows.
Our bookings have started early this year, so any returning customers, will please need to book early to avoid disappointment.
Upcoming events include
Dartmouth Comedy Festival
The Flavel in Dartmouth has put together a great lineup, which should raise at least a titter from most comedy fans. Find out more
Dartmouth Comedy Festival
The Flavel in Dartmouth has put together a great lineup, which should raise at least a titter from most comedy fans. Find out moreMarch 12th
March 12th, Grizzly, 20 mile marathon run up and down the coastal footpath, through Sidmouth, Beer and Branscombe organised by the Axe valley runners and not for the faint hearted.
Exeter Festival of South West Food & Drink
The region’s leading food festival will have another packed programme of chef demonstrations, hands on master classes, food stalls and tastings, as well as a dedicated children’s programme. Find out more
Toby Buckland Garden Festival at Powderham Castle
You’ll find top guest speakers, hand-picked exhibitors, practical workshops, the best of garden accessories, food and drink, outdoor cooking and woodland craft plus an abundance of exceptional flowers and plants in a beautiful setting at this popular annual event. Find out more
This year Exeter’s family-friendly Pride festival will include a rainbow flag parade and a packed programme of activities for children, young people and adults. In 2016 expect a heath zone, ceilidh, workshops, panel debate, drumming circle, trans workshop and popular local bands and DJs. Find out more
Devon County Show 2016
This traditional annual gathering of all that is Devon and country gets bigger and better every year! Expect fascinating shows, great food to try and lots of things to buy, and plenty to keep kids amused too. Find out more
The Contemporary Craft Festival
June 2016 will see over 200 makers of contemporary craft gathered in Bovey Tracey, including award winning silversmiths, potters, furniture makers, textile artists, glass makers, jewellery, 3D printing and even surfboards. There’ll also be a children’s craft tent, live music street food, talks and craft demonstrations. Find out more
Today was a perfect summer’s day with clear blue skies all day. The beach this year is flatter than usual with a strip of sand all the way along. The sea was amazingly clear and calm, making it easy, once we had got used to the cold, to go in for a swim.
On Monday the weather was cool so we decided to walk along the river Otter from Ottery St. Mary towards Tipton St. John to see if we could spot the beavers recently released.
Not a beaver in sight. Apparently they come out at dusk so the best time to catch them in the summer is around 7.30. Guided beaver walks are organised by the Devon Wildlife Trust on Wednesday 26th August and Tuesday 22nd September. See http://www.devonwildlifetrust.org/ Phone in advance to book.
For children Devon wildlife trust also organises a number of geocaching trails. http://www.devonwildlifetrust.org/geocaching/
It is a beautiful, open stretch of the river as it meanders through such a varied landscape of meadows and sandstone cliffs. At the start of the walk are 2 colonies of sand martins, demonstrating their fast and furious acrobatic skills as they skim the river in search of insects. All the way along were many butterflies and dragonflies. We were lucky to spot the blue flash of a kingfisher and the majestic flight of a buzzard.in the wild.
Towards Tipston St. John we came across a working Archimedes wheel. It produces 28k electricity and interesting information about the project can be found at
new.co.uk/files/case _studies/tipton_mill .pdf
May / June blog
Branscombe and the surrounding area are excellent for fishing.
On shore fishing from the beach is good, especially at night. The catch includes wrasse, dogfish, mackerel and garfish plus an occasional ray.
At low tide the rock pools at the western end of the beach are a great place for children to explore with buckets and fishing nets
In the summer months fishing trips can be can be booked from Branscombe or Beer where boats will take people out fishing for mackerel. Charters can be booked all year round for fishing off wrecks and reefs in Lyme Bay.
Boat Trips operate from Branscombe Beach on ‘Branscombe Pearl 11′ Tel: 01297 680369 or 07971 519163 and from Beer on ‘Sambe’ Tel: 01297 21955 or 07989 631321
Sambe on Branscombe beach
Devon Bass Pro Charters operate a fast deep sea angling charter boat, Outcast out of Axmouth Harbour on the East Devon Coast, Skippered by John Wallington who specialises in catching bass – big bass off the wrecks of Lyme Bay.
Deep Sea and Half-Day Angling Trips can be booked through Beer Fish Shop on 01297 20297.
April and May News
April and May in Branscombe are beautiful months to visit and and walk along the south west Coastal footpath or inland. The wooded paths have the most fantastic display of bluebells and wild garlic. There is a particularly spectacular walk around the Golden Cap, just into Dorset
On Saturday 9th May: There is a walk around Colyton called ‘Birdsong, bluebells and bacon baps’, organised by the Devon wildlife trust: Phone: 01297 23822
‘Last night, March 24th, saw the re-release of healthy beavers back on to the River Otter. The news comes after the animals were temporarily removed from the wild in February for disease testing.’
Devon Wildlife Trust are ‘delighted and relieved’ to see the beavers return to their home after testing disease-free. The re-release signals the beginning of a 5 year monitoring trial led by DWT and involving partners Clinton Devon Estates, Derek Gow Consultancy and University of Exeter.
The river Otter has a population of otters returning to the area. There are also now 2 groups of beavers, which it is hoped will breed and add further interest to the landscape and diversity of the area.