Torbay on the English Riviera

Wednesday, 11 October 2017 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General
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View from Torquay towards Paignton © Kicior99/cc-by-3.0

View from Torquay towards Paignton © Kicior99/cc-by-3.0

Torbay is a borough in Devon, administered by the unitary authority of Torbay Council. It consists of 62.87 square kilometres (24.27 sq mi) of land, spanning the towns of Torquay, Paignton and Brixham, located around an east-facing natural harbour (Tor Bay) on the English Channel. Torbay is roughly equidistant from the cities of Exeter and Plymouth. A popular tourist destination with a tight conurbation of resort towns, Torbay’s sandy beaches, mild climate and recreational and leisure attractions have given rise to the nickname of the English Riviera. Torbay’s main industry is tourism. It has a large number of European students learning English. The fishing port of Brixham is home to one of England and Wales’ most successful fishing fleets and regularly lands more value than any UK port outside Scotland. It is also a base for Her Majesty’s Coastguard and the Torbay Lifeboat Station. Famous former residents of Torbay include author Agatha Christie, who set many of her novels in a thinly disguised version of the borough.

Torbay has many settlements of which are suburbs. Larger settlements, hamlets and villages are listed. These include: Torquay including suburbs, Paignton including suburbs, Brixham including suburbs, Maidencombe, Yalberton, Blagdon, Churston Ferrers, and Galmpton. Torbay has three stations on the National Rail network, operated by First Great Western: Torre railway station is inland on the road from Torquay to Newton Abbot, Torquay railway station is close to Torre Abbey Sands and Paignton railway station serves that town and links with the heritage Dartmouth Steam Railway to Kingswear, connecting via the Dart ferry to Dartmouth.

Torquay Harbour © averoxus/cc-by-3.0 Torquay Harbour © Laura H./cc-by-sa-3.0 Torquay Harbour © ianmacm/cc-by-sa-3.0 View from Torquay towards Paignton © Kicior99/cc-by-3.0 Torquay Town Hall, the home of Torbay Council © Adrian Pingstone Babbacombe - Carlton Road © geograph.org.uk - David Hawgood/cc-by-sa-2.0 Babbacombe - Dive shop © geograph.org.uk - David Hawgood/cc-by-sa-2.0 Torquay - Belgrave Road © panoramio.com - Krisztina Braun/cc-by-sa-3.0 Torquay © panoramio.com - Krisztina Braun/cc-by-sa-3.0 The Paignton & Dartmouth Steam Railway passing over the Hookhills Viaduct © geograph.org.uk - Anthony Volante/cc-by-sa-2.0 Paignton - Palace Theatre © Leethomas787/cc-by-sa-4.0 Paignton - Oldway Mansion at dusk © Ianmacm Paignton - Hotels on Esplanade Road © geograph.org.uk - Derek Harper/cc-by-sa-2.0 Paignton Pier at dusk © geograph.org.uk - Crispin Purdye/cc-by-sa-2.0 Paignton Harbour © geograph.org.uk - Garth Newton/cc-by-sa-2.0 Brixham Harbour © Phil-lndn/cc-by-sa-4.0 Brixham Harbour © TempyIncursion/cc-by-sa-3.0 Brixham © panoramio.com - Tanya Dedyukhina/cc-by-3.0 Brixham © panoramio.com - Tanya Dedyukhina/cc-by-3.0 Brixham © panoramio.com - Tanya Dedyukhina/cc-by-3.0 Brixham - Berry Head lighthouse © Nilfanion/cc-by-sa-3.0 Brixham © geograph..org.uk - Chris Talbot/cc-by-sa-2.0
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The Paignton & Dartmouth Steam Railway passing over the Hookhills Viaduct © geograph.org.uk - Anthony Volante/cc-by-sa-2.0
Both Brixham and Paignton appear in the Domesday Book of 1086 and Paignton was given the status of a borough having a market and fair in 1294. The first major building in Torquay was Torre Abbey, a Premonstratensian monastery founded in 1196. William Prince of Orange (afterwards King William III) landed in Brixham on 5 November 1688, during the Glorious Revolution, and issued his famous declaration “The Liberties of England and The Protestant Religion I Will Maintain“. Torquay’s economy was, like Brixham’s, initially based on fishing and agriculture, but in the early 19th century it began to develop into a fashionable seaside resort, initially frequented by members of the Royal Navy during the Napoleonic Wars while the Royal Navy anchored in Tor Bay and later, as the town’s fame spread, by Victorian society. The historic part of Paignton is inland: the low-lying coastal fringe was originally salt marsh. Kirkham House is a late medieval stone house which is open to the public at certain times of year, and the Coverdale Tower adjacent to Paignton Parish Church is named after Bishop Miles Coverdale, who published an English translation of the Bible in 1536. Paignton remained a small fishing village until the early 19th century; a new harbour was built here in 1837.

There are three main towns around the marine inlet of Tor Bay: Torquay in the north, Paignton in the centre, and Brixham in the south. These have become connected over the years, swallowing up villages and towns such as St Marychurch, Cockington, Churston Ferrers and Galmpton. The borough of Torbay is bordered by the South Hams to the south and west, and by Teignbridge to the north. Nearby towns include Totnes and Dartmouth in the South Hams, and Newton Abbot and Teignmouth in Teignbridge. The southern limit of Tor Bay is Berry Head, and the northern limit is Hope’s Nose, although Torquay itself stretches further north into Babbacombe Bay, where the beaches at Oddicombe, Babbacombe and Maidencombe can be found; these are noted for their interesting Breccia cliffs. Torbay’s many geological features have led to the establishment of the English Riviera Geopark; as of July 2008, this is the sole urban geopark of the 53 geoparks worldwide. Because of the mild climate, Torbay palm trees are a common sight along the coast. However, these are in fact not palms but Cordyline australis, originating from New Zealand where it is known as “cabbage tree”. These trees also flourish elsewhere in the UK. It is suggested that the popularity of cabbage trees in Torbay is attributable to their first being introduced to the UK in that region.

Read more on Torbay Council, The English Riviera, Torquay, and Wikipedia Torbay (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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