With love from South Devon (2016)

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11.9.16 Dear Hilary, Simon & Gus We’ve arrived safely & this cottage is fine but in the back of beyond with no mobile connection/service. However, tomorrow we are going further afield so hope to reply to your text at least Gus. Glad you recognised my talent! ☺ Hope weekend in Manchester has gone well too & the visit to Bangor. The weather is lovely & we’re all happy. Much love Mum & Dad xxx

Following on from previous post, this card shows the restored steam train that runs along the beautiful Dart Valley. It is not clear whether Mum & Dad travelled on the train, indeed, there is no news at all of what they have been doing on their trip, apart from seeking mobile signal it would seem!

There is no postmark, just a biro mark across the stamp indicating that the card has gone through the UK postal system and the stamp cannot be reused.

A recent card from my parents who continue to enjoy travelling, as well as embracing both modern and traditional methods of communication well into their eighties 🙂

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With love from Torquay (circa 2004)

with-love-from-torquay

Hi, Greetings from Devon. The site is well equipped but big (and lots of Sun reader types!). Weather has been good so far (apart from putting the tent up in the rain). Have done some lovely walks and tomorrow is a boat trip up the river Dart.  Hope you’re all well, love John Joanne A & P

With no date and an illegible postmark it’s impossible to say when this card was sent, so I am guessing 2004 or thereabouts.

Torquay is on the South Devon coast and is part of what is known as the ‘English Riviera‘ due to its generally sunny, warm weather, which makes it a very popular holiday destination.

This is a later card from my brother, John, who is enjoying a camping holiday with his wife and children.

 

with love from Paignton, Devon (1980)

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Hello Hilary! I send you many greetings from Paignton. It’s really nice here. Also the weather is marvellous. The people I stay at are very kind. What I also like a lot is the beautiful landscape here. But the next time I’ll tell more. Yours Claudia

Claudia is enthusiastic about her visit to Paignton from Germany, although we are left wondering what the purpose of the visit is and how long she is staying.

I love the rhyme on the front of the card and the idea of leaving ‘Household chores’ behind!

The postmark  says ‘SOUTH DEVON’ but the rest is obscured, apart from the ’80 in the lower part; however, the ‘marvellous weather’ suggests summer time.  The stamp is a 10½p dull blue definitive.

Claudia and I recently reconnected as a result of this blog and are in touch regularly via email and Whatsapp – often while watching the same sporting event on TV’s in different countries…

 

with love from Ilfracombe (1976)

with love from Ilfracombe

To Hilary, I’m having a great time. On Sun we went on some go-karts motor ones it was great fun. Today we went to Arlington Court and yesterday we went to Lynmouth and Lynton. Tonight we might go fishing. The farms nice and they have a lamb that comes to you and 3 horses and sheep, cows and chicks bye for now Helen.

As this is postmarked ‘Tunbridge Wells 1.15pm 9 Aug 1976 Kent’ it would appear to have been posted after Helen returned from her trip to Devon. The other postmark reads ‘National Savings Diamond Jubilee 1916-1976 Go on saving at The Post Office’ – the Post Office promoting its savings schemes.

The stamp is 8½p – the price for a 2 ounce (57g) first class letter at the time, equivalent to 64p in 2015; a small postcard stamp would have cost 6½p (49p in 2015)

Helen went to Devon regularly, often staying on farms it seems. Ilfracombe remains much the same with that beautiful blue sky on the odd summer’s day; the white Royal Britannia Hotel on the right hand side is still a popular place to  stay.

I am increasingly sad that I lost touch with Helen, as we obviously exchanged cards for some years after I moved away from the area where we were at primary school together. 

with love from Lynmouth (1979)

with love from Lynmouth

Friday 24th August. Dear Hilary, Enjoying my holiday weather is very bad guest house and surrounding countryside are very nice though. We will be moving on to South Devon on Sunday, then we will go home on Wednesday We are off visiting friends tonight. Will write when I get home Love Helen

Postmarked ‘North Devon  7.00pm 28 August 1979’

A later card from Helen who, despite the ‘bad’ weather, appears to be enjoying another holiday in Devon with her family.

Lynmouth and Lynton are tucked away on the North Devon Coast (UK) and continue to be a popular destination ‘away from it all’ – not much has changed in 40 years.

 

Helen and I were friends in primary school; she emigrated, with her family, to New Zealand for a while, but they later came back. This card was written five years after I had moved away from my early childhood home. Sadly, I did not maintain contact with Helen and, as yet, I have been unable to trace her through the wonder of the internet.

with love from Buckfast Abbey (1983)

With love from Buckfast Abbey

26/4/83 Dear Hilary, It was really good to hear from you and to know that everything is going okay. Your card was very lucky to get to me as it seems I didn’t leave my address with my parents and only went home on the spur of the moment! I thought I’d send you a card although I don’t live in Buckfast – well just around the corner and I can see the Abbey when I go running! Life is just about okay but the college is a drag! Will write a letter soon Lots of love, Duncan x

This is post marked ‘South Devon 27th Apr 1983’ and obviously had enough postage on to reach me in Cyprus, where I was living at the time.  In 1983 the Post Office are still requesting us, via the other postmark, to ‘Be properly addressed POSTCODE IT’; this is 9 years after the final introduction of the postcode!

There has been an Abbey on the site at Buckfast, on the edge of the River Dart since 1018 The market town of Buckfastleigh is nearby.

In the late 70’s we finished school at 16 and either started work, went to Technical College for vocational qualifications or, as I did, went to 6th Form College to study A’ levels. Duncan was in my maths group; there were several lads from his school in the class and I remember them all as being taller and more mature than the boys from my school; they were also brighter with wicked senses of humour. I therefore relished maths lessons because they were such good fun, the teacher was excellent and we all learnt a lot. Duncan and I snogged on at least one occasion; we stayed in touch via letters and cards for some years, but sadly I have now lost touch with him…

with love from Widecombe in the Moor (1975)

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Dear Hilary & John, We are having a very nice holiday the weather has been very kind to us.  We visited Widdicombe yesterday & today we are sitting looking at nice sea with quite large waves at Meadfoot Beach between Paignton & Torquay.  Love to Mummy & Daddy.  Grandad & G~~~ (Grandma to you)

A classic status update from my paternal grandparents to my brother and me.  The postmark date is Newton Abbot, 1 June 1975.   Five stamps adding up to 5½p which was the cost of sending a postcard second class in 1975 (this is approximately 50p in 2014).

The picture illustrates the old nursery rhyme which reads:

Tom Pearce, Tom Pearce, lend me your grey mare, All along, down along, out along lee; For I want to go to Widecombe Fair Wi’ Bill Brewer, Jan Stewer, Peter Gurney, Peter Davey, Dan’l Whiddon, ‘Arry Hawk, Old Uncle Tom Cobleigh and all, Old Uncle Tom Cobleigh and all.

Grandad died in the early eighties.  Grandma was my last surviving grandparent and lived on to see me married, but missed being a Great Grandma.  In actual fact she was my Dad’s stepmother, but when I was born it was decided (for ease) that she would be known as Grandma.  She was a great needlewoman and textile artist and encouraged this in me.  More about my love of textiles here http://www.textiletarts.co.uk/about