End of Summer Escapes

The end of August and beginning of September are a perfect time of year to visit South Devon! Mild temperatures, quiet beaches, stunning clifftop walks, seal spotting and beautiful waterfront towns to explore….

An ideal time of year for couples who want to explore the local area, or families with young children who arent tied down to term time holidays.

With prices from just £320 a week (special offer) you can embrace all that South Devon has to offer!

A warm welcome awaits you…

National Cream Tea Week

Its practically an unspoken rule that on a holiday to Devon you should indulge in a traditional Cream Tea!

Of course, there is great debate about what should go first….the jam or the cream?!

In Devon there is only one way to enjoy your cream tea, and that- of course, is cream first, jam on top!

We have a wonderful selection of tea rooms, farm shops and cafes for you to choose from when going for a cream tea, here are some of our favourites:

  1. The Seabreeze Cafe, Torcross. A delightful cafe on the seafront at Torcross, we love the coastal themed interior and their generous sized scones! Enjoy your cream tea whilst listening to the sea lapping at the shore!
  2. Stokely Farm Shop Cafe. An excellent farmshop where you could buy all the ingredients to make your own – or simply enjoy sitting outside amongst the greenery and sample one of their homemade cream teas!
  3. Avon Mill Garden Centre. A lovely garden centre with excellent cafe, why not build up an appetite walking along the banks of the River Avon before filling up on a cream tea!
  4. South Allington House. A privately owned country house and campsite, enjoy a cream tea on the lawn.

Wherever you decide to have your cream tea, we hope that you savour every mouthful….and please remember the cream first!

 

A weekend in South Devon

We thought we would put together a couple of itineraries based on things our guests have told us they love to do!

A relaxed weekend away

After you have arrived at Beeson Farm and made yourselves at home why not wander down to the Cricket Inn at Beesands for a delicious seafood supper whilst overlooking beautiful Start Bay, waiting for the light of the lighthouse to come on.

Day 1: Head over to Torcross (either walk along the coastpath from Beesands or take the car). The village has an interesting hist0ry- stop at the tank to learn more about Operation Tiger, the D Day landing practice that ended in tragedy. Spend some time on the beach, feed the ducks or take a stroll around Slapton Ley nature reserve.

Stop for lunch at Stokelely Farm Shop and have a browse of the garden centre and craft/interiors shops before stocking up for a BBQ from the butcher.

Day 2:Drive to Start Point lighthouse and take the circular walk to Mattiscombe beach, stopping for a tour of the lighthouse on the way. Keep you eyes peeled for seals.

Day 3: Visit Kingsbridge, Dartmouth or Salcombe. Each town is on the waterfront and has a lovely mix of independent shops, galleries and cafes

A weekend with the kids

Day 1: Arrive at Beeson Farm and let the children run off steam in our playground, cider orchard or with a game of table tennis or badminton. Head down to Beesands for fish and chips from Britannia Takeaway and sit on the beach whilst the children have a paddle.

Day 2: Have breakfast at Stokeley Farm Shop and buy supplies for a picnic before heading to Mill Bay. The children will enjoy the golden sands, digging dams and rockpooling. Take the passenger ferry over to Salcombe and explore the town if you go drag them away from the beach

Day 3: Head to Kingsbridge with the crab lines and try crabbing from the harbour wall. Ride the miniature train from the tourist informaiton centre to the recreation ground and then head to the Crabshell Inn for lunch or to book a paddleboarding lesson.

A foodie weekend

Day 1: After you have arrived pop down to either the award winning Cricket Inn at Beesands or the award winning Bear and Blacksmith in Chillington for dinner.

Day 2: Have a morning coffee at Fika in Kingsbridge before driving on to Bantham for a walk on the beach (or book into surf school if you are feeling adventurous!) Have a late lunch at the Oyster Shack and stop at Avon Mill Garden Centre for a cream tea on the way home. If you have room enjoy takeaway fish and chips from Britannia at Beesands!

Day 3: Have breakfast at Springfield Farmshop before heading to Gara Rock. Park at Gara and walk the circular route to Mill Bay and back before enjoying lunch with an awesome view!

 

 

Group bookings

Beeson Farm makes the ideal getaway for a weekend or longer with a group of friends, family or for a special reunion and in 2019 this seems to be a particularly popular option.

Our cottages are all centered around the old farm courtyard, which is ideal for gathering outside in the summer months and lighting up the BBQs whilst enjoying a cold glass of homemade Beeson Farm Cider from our orchard.

Children will love to play in the table tennis room, have a game of badminton or enjoy the freedom of running around the field and playarea.

Sleeping 22 guests (plus babies in cots) throughout the five cottages there is enough accommodation for everyone. The Linhay and Dairy have downstairs bedrooms and accessible bathrooms making our cottages perfect for a multigenerational holiday.

The courtyard catches the sun all day long and the beach is a short drive or a mile long walk through the village down to Beesands. The pub has an extensive dining area and also benches overlooking the sea with views towards Start Point Lighthouse.

The local area offers plenty of ideas to entertain all ages, from adventure theme parks to National Trust properties as well as the picturesque waterfront towns of Salcombe, Kingsbridge and Dartmouth.

Book your group holiday and reconnect with those friends and family youve been meaning to hang out with!

A day in Kingsbridge

Our local town of Kingsbridge, just over 6 miles from Beeson Farm, is a wonderful local hub that sits at the head of the Salcombe Estuary.

In summer children love to sit on the embankment with their crabbing lines and watch the boats come and go. The estuary is well used by boats, kayakers and paddleboarders as well as the Kingsbridge-Salcombe ferry.

Kingsbridge town is a lovely mix of independent shops, galleries, antique/vintage shops, places of worship and cafes.

Start off your day at the very top of town at the Cookworthy Museum where you can discover the history of the local area. After your visit pop across the road to the worlds smallest nightclub, housed in a telephone box!

Head down fore street stopping at the community garden on the way.  Walk under the Shambles (an old market hall on raised granite pillars dating from Elizabethan times) and you will come across the old town hall, now the towns cinema. The cinema is one of the most recognisable buildings in the town, with its distinctive clock face which has only three faces- the fourth faced the old workhouse and so wasn’t added to prevent the inmates from clock watching!

Discover the eclectic mix of shops and galleries that line Fore Street. With something for all ages from toy shops (The Trading Post and Non Such) to independent clothes shops (Posh Totti, Cocoa, Spotted, Mint Dress Agency), galleries (the Mayne Gallery, Tidal Gallery and The Art Cafe where you can paint your own pottery) and the wonderful Harbour bookshop.

Coming off the highstreet you can find many little alleyways lined with cottages – often with fascinating names such as Squeezebelly Alley. As the name suggests it is too narrow for more than one person to pass through at a time!

Pass the entrance to the estuary and hop on the miniature railway to the end of the line where you can disembark for the recreation ground (with excellent childrens playgroud) or walk on down for a drink at the Crabhsell Inn overlooking the water.

Kingsbridge has a thriving antiques scene with the Antiques and Craft Centre on Ebrington Street and the eclectic Two Rooms on Lower Union Road (a bazaar of the bizarre, full floor to ceiling with treasures and well worth a rummage!), as well as numerous charity shops.

Kingsbridge Information Centre sits on the town square and the staff are very  happy to help  with recommendations for places to eat and things to do.

No matter what the time of year there are plenty of local events in the town to choose from, incluing the regular farmers market, Kingsbridge Food and Music Festival (June), Kingsbridge Fair Week (July) Kingsbridge Show (September) and Kingsbridge Celebrates Christmas (December)

Kingsbridge also has an indoor pool and sports centre.

Eating Out

Kingsbridge has something to suit all tastes and also numerous takeaways. For families we recommend eating the Art Café, the Crabshell Inn, Cool Beans Coffee shop, La Ranchera (amazing Mexican food) or the Fat Monkey.

For light lunches we can recommend Harbour House Café at the Arts and Yoga centre which has a delicious menu of vegetarian and vegan food, new arrival Fika, a Scandinavian inspired coffee house, and the Old Bakery which has a beautiful courtyard.

For a special meal head to Wild Artichokes (run by chef Jane Baxter) or Twenty Seven run by Jamie Rogers

Whatever you get up to on a day out in Kingsbridge we hope you enjoy it!

Easter in South Devon

On Easter Sunday morning join us on the farm to see what the Easter Bunny has been up too- we can guarantee that there will be plenty of chocolate easter eggs hiding around the farm, cottages and courtyard for our youngest guests!

Head over to the annual South Pool Easter Fun Day on April 20th (Approx 10 mins from Beeson Farm) The fun takes place alongside the estuary in the pretty village of South Pool, home to the fabulous Millbrook Inn. Turn up with your Easter Bonnet for the childrens egg hunt and bonnet competition from 12:15pm and then marvel at the South Pool duck race from 2pm, chose your rubber duck and cheer it on as it floats to victory down the estuary! There will be a BBQ and live music at the pub throughout the afternoon.

East Soar Outdoor Experience is situated on a National Trust farm in one of the the most breathtaking parts of South Devon on the headland, just above the picturesque town of Salcombe (approx 15 mins drive from Beeson Farm). Their yearly Easter family fun days are hugely popular with locals and guests alike and will runs over the Easter holidays. 11am daily, £3 per child.

The Tower Inn in Slapton are hosting their own mini Easter fair on the 20th April, with plenty of entertainment for the children and wonderful food and drink for the adults to get Easter off to a great start!

Start Point Lighthouse

Trinity House has completed the modernisation of Start Point Lighthouse in Devon, upgrading the site’s aids to navigation and control systems to provide simplified maintenance and reliable performance that will extend the life of the station for a further 20 years.
Start Point Lighthouse—located on the most southerly tip of Devon—was built by Trinity House in 1836 and automated in 1993.  The peninsula runs for almost a mile out to sea on the south side of Start Bay. The walk up to Start Point Lighthouse is breathtaking – dramatic cliffs and landscape, and the South West Coast Path runs along this stretch of coastline. There are great walks towards Beesands and Torcross, or East Prawle and Salcombe. You may even see seals or dolphins out at sea – and a host of sea birds and birds of prey.

The lighthouse provides a navigational light comprised of three white flashes every ten seconds that can be seen from Prawle Point to the west and across Start Bay to the east, as well as a red sector light that marks the Skerries Bank, a shallow area to the east of the lighthouse. A hazard warning signal sounds during low visibility conditions that blasts once every 30 seconds when visibility drops below one nautical mile.

Start Point Lighthouse was modernised in 2019, upgrading the site’s aids to navigation and control systems to provide simplified maintenance and reliable performance, including the installation of new LED lamps for the main navigation light and a new hazard warning signal.

The lighthouse is now monitored and controlled from Trinity House’s Planning Centre in Harwich, Essex.

Give up plastic this Lent

We recently read this article about giving up plastic for Lent https://metro.co.uk/2018/02/14/best-thing-give-lent-plastic-not-chocolate-7312789/?ito=social&fbclid=IwAR0ICRmiGWBp4LXCmfDn6oXwvpTdBTwcl585sEfociUxgmJcNBH8-gzy4oU

We all agree that single use plastic is absurd and the effects of plastic pollution in our oceans are starting to be seen everywhere. We will certainly be considering how we shop and the products we choose to try and go plastic free for Lent and hope that our self catering guests do too…

Stokeley farm shop has everything you could need from a high quality butcher, cheese counter, fresh baked goods, local vegetables, locally produced beer, wine and gin and all other manner of groceries and essentials. The shop is very happy for you to take your own containers for your meat etc. You can also take home your produce from the butchery and deli counters in your own reusable containers to help reduce single use plastic.

Pretty local is on online marketplace offering a fantastic array of high quality food and drink. Each of their sellers is located in south devon within a 20 mile radius of Kingsbridge, keeping food miles to a minimum and supporting local farmers and producers. Order online by midnight on Wednesday to have your food delivered to your cottage on a Friday so it is in the kitchen for you when you arrive (they will even unpack everything and put items that need it into the fridge). We are pleased to see that most items come in a paper bag or without uneccessary plastic packaging.

Milk – we supply our cottages with milk from Dartmouth Dairy, making sure there is a pint in the fridge for you when you arrive. Their delicious locally produced milk is delivered to our doorstep in glass bottles, which we then return to them for reuse and we are delighted that as the tide turns against plastic waste the old fashioned milkman is making a comeback!

Cleaning products we use biodegradable, eco friendly cleaning products on our changeovers and try to ensure that our cottages are equipped with the same. We use Bio D products which are approved by Cruelty Free International and the Vegan Society, which are also hypoallergenic. we buy in bulk and refill our own containers. We also use Ecover cleaning products, which are mostly renewable, biodegradable plant based ingredients.

Our handwash and washing up liquid is also supplied in bulk and we refill plastic bottles ensuring that we aren’t contributing to the plastic waste problem.

We encourage all our guests to recycle via the recycling bins in the shed. We thoroughly clean and reuse empty plastic bottles for our homemade farmhouse cider and apple juice each year. We encourage guests to compost their food scraps which we use on the garden- or where applicable feed to our guinea pigs and chickens (they both love a broccoli stalk!)

Lets take just 6 weeks to try and make a change.

Pancake Day

Pancake day is a firm favourite with all the family at Beeson Farm holiday cottages- especially the dog who waits expectantly for any failed flips and pancakes falling from the heavens! Although we love a good fluffy American style pancake for breakfast we think for pancake day you’ve got to go traditional. Guests are very welcome to go down to the chicken coop and collect fresh eggs for the recipe!

Here is our foolproof Beeson Farm Pancake Recipe (just make sure you have a really good flat bottomed pancake pan)

Ingredients

  • 100g plain flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 300ml milk
  • 1 tbsp sunflower or vegetable oil, plus a little extra for frying
  • lemon wedges, to serve (optional)
  • caster sugar, to serve (optional)
  • Put the flour, eggs, milk, 1 tbsp oil and a pinch of salt into a bowl or large jug, then whisk to a smooth batter. Set aside for 30 mins to rest if you have time, or start cooking straight away.Set a medium frying/crepe pan over a medium heat and lightly wipe it with some oiled kitchen paper. When hot, cook your pancakes for 1 min on each side until golden, keeping them warm in a low oven as you go.Serve with lemon wedges and sugar, or your favourite filling.

For all your pancake day ingredients (including delicious fillings) head down to Stokeley Farm Shop (between Stokenham and Torcross).

For a savoury twist check out the recipes on the Riverford Organic website here https://www.riverford.co.uk/blog/2018/02/09/live-life-veg-pancake-day/

If you prefer to go out for pancakes we can recommend The Seabreeze Cafe at Torcross for big American fluffy style pancakes or head to the Cricket Inn at Beesands for their hugely popular seafood pancake!

Year of the Pig. Gung Hay Fat Choi!

Year of the Pig

Chinese New Year is the year of the pig (the 12th animal on the Chinese calendar) so we felt it was only right that we rounded up a few porcine places for you to get snout and about during your holiday!

The South Hams, (as our corner of South Devon is known) is an area of outstanding natural beauty encompassing large swathes of Dartmoor and stretching down to the coast. Home to vibrant and historic towns, quaint villages, hidden valleys and picturesque countryside, intersected with scenic rivers, the South Hams are a little corner of paradise

Pennywell Farm is home to the work famous Pennywell Miniature pigs, specially bred to be small friendly and exceedingly cute! Pennywell farm is a fantastic day out for families (especially young children), and visitors are welcome to cuddle the pigs and experience the thrill of pig racing every day at 2:30pm!

The Pigs Nose Inn for a totally different way to spend Chinese New Year, head over to the Pigs Nose Inn in the village of East Prawle- the most southerly point of Devon. This traditional 16th-century inn serves classic pub grub and real ales amid snug, quirky interiors. Sit by the fire and try your hand at some knitting from the knitting basket, play board games or pool- dogs and children are very welcome. There is regular live music in the adjacent hall which has seen everything from the Wurzels to Atomic Kitten!

The Pigs Nose and Gammon Head are also points on the south west coastpath, follow this circular walk (stopping at the interesting visitor centre at the coastwatch) before heading to the pub for a drink!

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/east-portlemouth-to-prawle-point/trails/prawle-point-walk

For a delicious Chinese meal (either takeaway or sit down meal), we highly recommend the food at Café Asia, in Kingsbridge. Lovely friendly staff and a delicious menu of South East Asian cuisine.