The southernmost of the English Riviera towns, Brixham is a family resort and fishing port. It is a hilly town built high above the harbour. A rather distinctive ambience and colour with its narrow streets, unique shops, cafes and pubs.
The town has been a fishing port for centuries and it is still active with fresh fish available early in the morning at the fish market. Interesting for self caterers and the fish in the local cafes and restaurants is good.
Take a boat trip and marvel at the stunning coastline of Torbay. One of those photo opportunities.
St Mary's Bay, Brixham 2008
Photograph © Tom Jolliffe
The town has some good beaches. St Mary's is a delightful long sandy beach, but some of the others are small and pebbly.
Scuba diving is popular off the beach in clear and calm waters of Brixham Breakwater.
The biggest attraction in the harbour is the full sized replica of Sir Francis Drake's ship “The Golden Hind” moored there. Captain Drakes's original ship circumnavigated the world between 1577 and 1580. One of the most exciting voyages of all time.
The Golden Hind Replica Brixham Harbour
Photograph © Derek Voller
Sir Francis Drake was a Devon man. A legend. He was born in Tavistock 1541 or 42 and died of dysentry in 1596 aboard “The Defiance”. He was buried near Puerto Bello, Panama. In between times a life of incredible adventure and success.
Apart from circumnavigating the world, he is best known for his defeat of the Armada – after he had finished his game of bowls on Plymouth Hoe.
The “Golden Hind” and its exhibition is an exciting and enthralling experience for young and old alike.
Brixham is famous in English history. It is here in 1688 that William of Orange made his claim to the English throne with his famous speech “The Liberties of England and The Protestant Relgion I will maintain”. He had just landed with his Dutch army after being invited to come. He brought his army as he suspected not everyone would be in agreement with this idea.
The Glorious Revolution followed. He became co ruler with his wife and cousin, Mary II, daughter of James II, the monarch they succeeded. There is a statue to William of Orange in the Inner Harbour.
Another notch in history can be claimed by the town as it is said that here the fishing trawler was invented in the nineteenth century.
The town was also one of the places from which the D Day Landings left. Piers and ramps were built from which the American Servicemen left.
The town has seen much naval history as Torbay has been a much used bay and Brixham has been the place that supplied the ships. The point at Berry Head was a strategic site for guns.
At one time there was an Iron Age Fort on Berry Head but the earthworks were destroyed when the Napoleonic War defences were being built.
A coastal walk to Berry Head climbing up to the cliff top National Nature Reserve – stunning. Home to some rare species of flora that likes a limestone environment.
On the tip of Berry Head is the lighthouse. It is not only the smallest lighthouse in the United Kingdom it is also the highest!
The beautiful hymn “Abide with me” was written by Reverend Francis Lyte when he was dying at Berry Head House. He was vicar of All Saints Church.
All Saints Church,
Photograph © Chris Talbot
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Fishing Vessel, "Vigilance", leaving Brixham.
Photograph © Len Williams
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Travel Wessex is a Guide.
Accommodation is plentiful in this lovely town. Booking is advised in the summer as this delightful spot is popular!!! Not so bad in the winter and Brixham is still delightful then, so why not a winter break!!
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If you do decide the leave the car at home and help the environment too, why not go National Express. They run coaches all over the country. Some pretty good fares too.
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