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Hiking on
and by the
South Devon Coast Path
October 16th - 23rd, 1999

Launched October 24th, 1999
Ronald Langereis - 1999 - Amsterdam

Day Five - Wednesday, October 20th

Visiting Exeter

No pictures
But who cares? There's more than enough to see by the links below, and don't miss the 'Photo Album'!
Scutcheon of Exeter Direct link to Exeter Cathedral's own homepage.
There even is a page in Dutch!
Any description of Exeter would be rather superfluous, as you can read it all for yourself in the accompanying links on the left.
Leaving the vans in the parking area we had a stroll through the city, passing by the Old Harbour and crossing the footbridge across the Exe. We were heading for the Cathedral and found its front hanged with wire netting, being almost invisible from a distance, but effective against doves' droppings, nevertheless.
We spent half an hour examining the cathedral, and wondered if the roof would stand the brute power of the organ as its pipes were rising from floor to ceiling in the right transept.
What amazed me were the small groups of pupils from the lower grades, the teachers commenting on the cathedral's architecture and ornamentation; the pupils taking notes, apparently interested!
After the tour we had tea in the old refectory, which is now a tea room. Then we split up to explore the treasures of Exeter, anyone to his, if not her own liking.
All I may add is that this Wednesday in October the weather was chilly and after a short tour of local drugstores - where extensive displays of all kinds of cod liver oil (yawgh!) are still to be encountered - we spent the greater part of the afternoon inside. Just outside the shopping center we had an English coffee in the Irish pub, surrounded by an abundance of mirrors gracefully provided for by wellknown distilleries.
Later on we moved to the Ship Inn, once a favourite haunt of Sir Francis Drake and Sir Walter Raleigh, where we had lunch and watched the locals watching the Rugby World Cup 1999, which was blearing from a threesome of suspended TV sets. Apart from the fireplace, the rest of the interior reminded me of places where a blind horse can inflict only minor damage.
The main reason I didn't enjoy Exeter much was the modernness of its center. I supposed the Germans might have bombed the medieval town into litter during WWII and afterwards I found confirmation of this fact on the Internet.
Read it for yourself, the sad story of the Exeter Blitz.
Information on Exeter Direct link to Exeter University Guild homepage.
Historical overview from the Roman invasion to the students' invasion!
Tourist information on Exeter Direct link to Exeter City Tourist Information web site
Sir Francis DrakeIn 1577 Sir Francis Drake, born in Tavistock, West-Devon, was the first Englishman to sail around the globe. He returned to England in 1580 and was knighted by Queen Elizabeth I. After leading a naval force to defeat the Spanish Armada in 1588, Drake became one of the most famous men of his day. He died at sea in 1596.
Sir Walter RaleighSir Walter Raleigh was born in Hayes Barton, Devonshire, in 1554. He was an adventurer and a writer, who was prominent at the court of Queen Elizabeth I. When Elizabeth had died in 1603, her successor, King James, who disliked Raleigh, had him accused of treason and convicted to death, a sentence that was commuted to life imprisonment, but never revoked. After his release in 1616, Raleigh went to Guyana in pursuit of 'El Dorado', an adventure that ended in disaster. On his return to England the king invoked the death sentence of 1603; Raleigh was beheaded on Oct. 29, 1618.

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