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   Dartmouth News                 19th April 2007
 

1.    Dart Gig Club's Tenth Regatta

2.    Keeping Dartmouth Special

3.    The new Town Crier

4.    Ladies who lunch

5.    Fire in Kingswear

6.    The Queen at The Guildhall TODAY

7.    Dart Marina Show Home

8.    Small News

 


1.     Dart Gig Club's Tenth Regatta

Getting readyThe start line
On the wayHard work at the castle
That was good!Time to relax..........

Kevin Pyne reports:  When Dart gig club was formed the then fledgling founder members took the decision not to name it for any village town on the Dart but to name it for the river itself as its members come from both sides of the river and all along its banks. The racing over last weekend more than vindicated this decision as it could not have taken place with out the cooperation of various organizations such as the Royal Dart Yacht Club who provide race marks and ground tackle, the Dartmouth Yacht Club who allow the use of their catering facilities to Dart Gig Club and its visitors alike.  The Harbour Authority and the police and local traffic warden also play a major role in the success of the event. 

A pilot gig is first and foremost a tool, and there were many such craft along the coasts of Devon and Cornwall. As far back as the 1830s, gig were being raced on the Dart and for fantastic prizes, twenty sovereigns was not unheard of, and in a time when a wages were five shillings a day, it is no wonder that the men and woman of the Dart were so keen.  Dartmouth's open to all the world race attracted gigs from all over the country, arriving as they did in the final years before the great war, on flat trucks hauled by steam trains. The men of the river would also regularly race on the coast of Brittany carrying the gigs as deck cargo on sailing craft.

This weekend's racing followed in those traditions.  The many crews were fully aware that they were racing on what can only be described as a beautiful venue, and it was held in superb conditions and as always attracted a good following from the Clubs in Devon and Dorset. World champions Caradon came across the border from Cornwall, but not everything went their way and the line honours were spread around the clubs fairly evenly the host club winning both the Vet.'s and the Menís B, showing strengths at both ends of the gig racing spectrum.  River Teign Gig Club won the Dartmouth Arms salver which is presented for the highest points scored over all .

Any one who would like to try gig rowing on the Dart may come along at any time and they will be made welcome. The club has just acquired a new fibre glass training gig in order to accommodate more rowers and they are more than happy to welcome new members aboard !

If you missed this great event, why not come down anyway for a short break, for self catering click here,  for B&B click here,  for Hotels click here For a Tourist Guide to Dartmouth click here.
 


2.    Keeping Dartmouth  Special

Councillor Dave Cawley reports:  When I was 11 years old, my parents moved from Tiverton to Portreath in Cornwall.  Portreath was a small coal port on the North Coast, it was quiet and unspoilt.  The school bus stopped to collect us near the beach and we walked across the sand picking up bits of driftwood and old cork washed up that night.  The Beatles had just arrived but the Light Programme would not play them and got Danny Street and his chums to do endless cover versions.  We had heard of the Pirate Radio movement, but we were too far away to receive them.  The first episode of Dr Who was so popular that by public request it was repeated the following week before the second episode.  Soon the Beach Boys and the Monkeys arrived, but we had to wait for Top of the Pops or Juke Box Jury to hear them.  The Tory Canyon had spilt its oil and Harold Wilson came to have look on his way to the Scilly Isles. The Tokyo Olympics took place with its memorable theme tune and BBC2, let alone colour TV was a distant dream.  Time in Devon & Cornwall went by very slowly, hours turned into days and seconds looked back wistfully at the minutes.  Tourists never found us as the roads were awful and Portreath was not signposted.  Real beer had not been invented, because it was already real.

Dave continues:  Last year Jill and I returned to Portreath, what a changed place, the beach was still wonderful, but the quay and coalyard had been ruined by a big new housing development built in the late  70's.  It had no sprit and no soul.  I reminisced with the locals about the halcyon days of the early 60's.

Dartmouth has seen some great changes in the last 4 years, the Sports Centre, The Flavel and the Townstal Community Centre, what fantastic improvements.  I also remember the relentless pile driving in the early 80's when the Embankment was re-built.  But we need to be careful, very careful about the future.  If we are not we could so easily change into a dead town by a river, or a Mac Donalds and amusement arcade town.  I'm sure none of us wants this so it is essential that we choose the option of Keeping Dartmouth Special.
 


3.    The new Town Crier

Tessa de Galleani reports:  After a few minor problems we now have a bold new Town Crier!  Announcing the Farmers' Market, the Market Regeneration Exhibition, and the Gig Regatta last Saturday, Les Ellis made a fine job and attracted so many positive comments.  Les who is also a member of The Magic Circle was shown around the town by Jill Cawley and simply amazed locals and tourists alike!

The Chamber of Trade is solely responsible for the Town Crier.  The Chamber itself has seen a regeneration in recent months, offering business-business networking, potentially lower cost fire inspections, and input into both South Hams District Council and Dartmouth Town Council on business matters in Dartmouth.  If you have a business in Dartmouth please call Tessa our Membership Secretary on 832069.
 

 

4Ladies who lunch

Liza Cadby of reports: We are starting our Ladies Lunch Club on Wednesday 25th April. These will take place once a month at the Dart Marina and will be generally on the last Wednesday.  The lunch is a two course lunch with wine, and a guest speaker.

Our first speaker is Sally Hurst, a local business lady and the founder of the "Old Bag Company"  Contact Liza on  01803 837107.


5.    Fire in Kingswear

 

Kittery Court, a very expensive and desirable renovation directly on the river in Kingswear amazed locals with deafening fire alarms followed by 5 fire crews.  After the flames the whole river valley filled with smoke.  The evening TV news crews were too late to show the flames though.

The story attracted the attention of the national press and TV News, is Dartmouth ever out of the news?
 


6.    The Queen at The Guildhall TODAY

The Queen is an intelligent, funny and ultimately a rather moving film. Directed by Stephen Frears, The Queen begins in May 1997 as Elizabeth II (Helen Mirren) asks the newly elected Tony Blair (Michael Sheen) to form her government.  It then flashes forward to 1st September, as the world wakes up to the tragic news of Princess Diana's death. Unable to comprehend the scale of the public's response to the tragedy, the Queen retreats behind the walls of Balmoral, in an attempt to keep the family's grief private. Meanwhile, as the public (and the media) demand that the Royals show their faces, Blair attempts to persuade the Queen to make a statement to the people.

Our bar at The Guildhall opens at 7.30. The film to be shown at 8pm approx.
Guest tickets for sale at The Windjammer 7.30-7.55 at £3.50
 


7.     Dart Marina Show Home

Jane Summers of Frank Knight reports:  Almost a year on from the much talked about launch of the first phase of this prestigious waterside development, Knight Frank confirms interest in these luxury homes is as fervent as ever. The latest two-bedroom show apartment sold within a startling two weeks of its release and has resulted in the need for a further two new show apartments to be created, which will be made available next month. 

Dart Marina has been skilfully created from a former shipyard site to become a mixed use scheme comprising 27 apartments and nine houses with a link to the existing extensively refurbished hotel, new bistro with river terrace, a health and beauty suite, swimming pool, gymnasium and new facilities for the marinaís boat owners including 110 berths.
 


8.     Small News
 

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