The Gerrard Chronicles 2020 - Traveller's Tales

Art Scene

The Campaign Trail

Traveller's Tales - History trip

Xmas 2020 Index page

A Xmas Cruise to the Canary Isles December 22nd 2019 to January 6th

Fully reported on this link.
Not at all to our surprise, the other cruises booked for 2020 were cancelled.

Visiting Elizabeth-Jane on Dartmoor August 21st - 24th

E-J, as Ken calls her, is some sort of cousin Ken met, when he was setting up the Baldry Family History Society at the end of 2000. She play the Harp for a living & did so at Ken's 60th & 70th birthday parties. We see her infrequently but keep closely in touch. Despite the Covid restrictions having been eased somewhat, we could not visit Avis' sister Alyson, who was shielding her multiple health problems, so we took advantage of the time to visit E-J in the enchanting village of Chagford on Dartmoor, where, to her delight, Ken describes her as the Village Earth-Mother.

The New Forest & Ringwood

We did not go straight to Dartmoor but had a look round the New Forest first & stayed overnight at the Original White Hart at Ringwood. comfortable but with mediocre pub food for dinner.

The original White Swan



The stop also gave us time to visit Tolpuddle for the Martyrs of 1834. These were early trades unionists accused of forming a trades union. They were transported to Australia but agitation for their return soon started up & they were back by 1837

The Tolpuddle Martyrs' Memorial

Chagford & Dartmoor

When we got to Chagford, we booked another night at the Hotel, which was “ Ring O‘ Bells”, so we could have a whole day with E-J. Then, we went round to her normally cosy little nest of a house but she had had a flood, so the harps were standing on dustbin bags. E-J was her usual bubbly self, though & we arranged to have dinner in the “ Globe”, where we had stayed before.

The Hotel in...

...The Square, Chagford

The next day, E-j took us for a drive round Dartmoor. It is so full of twisty narrow roads, that we had no idea where we were but were mightily impressed by how E-J got her Volvo Estate (big enough to take a harp) safely along them. The first stop was at Drewsteignton, where Ken photoed the church out & in & the girls (Avis 85 & E-J 59).

Avis & Elizabeth-Jane

Drewsteignton Church

The church interior

Then, to Fingle Bridge, a noted local beauty spot but since it was a Sunday, everyone else was there, too. The bridge is medieval & clowns in cars found out the hard way how narrow it is!

From the bridge

From the bridge

We passed under Castle Drogo, a fake built by Lutyens. At a crossroads (appropriately) we saw the grave of Jay, who was seduced & committed suicide about 1800. There are always flowers on this grave & no one knows who puts them there. After passing impressive rocks, which reminded us of Torcal in Spain, on our way to....

Castle Drogo

Jay's Grave

Just rocks

...Widdecombe, we stopped for lunch. On to Dartsmeet, where the two Rivers Dart, meet. There was half a clapper bridge there but at Postbridge, there was a complete one.

Widdecombe Church



Finally, we went to Bennet's Cross, which appears to be a Neolithic Standing Stone that someone has attempted to hack into a cross. It stands high up in Dartmoor.
Then, fond farewells with virtual hugs only & the next day, straight back home.

Bennet's Cross in situ

Bennet's Cross

Art Scene

The Campaign Trail

Traveller's Tales - History trip

Xmas 2020 Index page

Contact: Ken Baldry or Avis Saltsman, 17 Gerrard Road, Islington, London N1 8AY +44(0)020 7359 6294 or e-mail him or her
This page's URL: Last revised 1/12/2020 ©Ken Baldry 2020 All rights reserved but print it off if you want to.