If you can read somebody by their bookcase, maybe you can read a village by its jumble – and the wider world has been getting a glimpse of Horrabridge through an hour of close reading of the games, films, music, books and whatnots, laid out for the first village boot sale last Sunday.

CarbootChris, a Modbury-based blogger and Ebay dealer, and his partner, Bargain Bell, turned up to film their siftings for a bargain.

The visitors from t’other side: back at base with Bell showing off their best buy  from Horrabridge …

The village and the villagers are just passing legs and arms on the whole, because the reporter wore his camera on his chest and was concentrating on the goods. But his report on how it all looked to a dispassionate eye is interesting advice on the art of scavenging and can be found HERE

They didn’t have a great day in terms of profit but proved their point that there is always something going for pennies which might actually be worth a few pounds. Chris bought a bundle of X-box games at three per £, some mint Lego packages and a slice of cake and Bell found a nice vintage Popeye T-shirt. And going through their film afterwards, they regretted not buying two tankards with the Lord Mayor of London’s crest on them, from the youth club stall. They could have had them for £1 and later found similar glasses selling for £27 each on Ebay.

Youth club fund-raiser Janet Kendall still has the mugs if anyone is interested. “Nobody even picked them up on the day,” she says.

The visitors, who moved from Manchester this year, are still discovering Devon and had not been over this way before. They got to Fillace Park in time for one of the couple of drizzles which marred an otherwise fine morning and were told all about bloody Devon microclimates”. Their business website is HERE


Locally, the event was well enjoyed, in mainly good sunshine, and complimented for good organisation, of cars and people. The sports club made a couple of hundred towards the pavilion fund and managed to fit in an exhibition match by the over-50s squad. And they’re prepared to do it all again, afternoon of Sunday August 16, 1 to 4.30. Comments and criticisms taken on board and they are thinking about food and planning to change the lay-out to cut out a dead corner and allow more stalls – maybe as many as 50.

To book a pitch for Sunday week, contact Becci Monk by email at or by text at 07583 151244.

We ended up with a good vinyl buy and a jar of marmalade and would have bought a walking stick and an angle grinder if we hadn’t only just cleared out The Shed.

* New news …

Horrabridge Rangers have read all the rules and are ready to run football for kids, boys and girls, 5 to 10 years, on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, through August, starting next week, 9 am to 11 am. For details of safety procedures, see Ian Mulholland’s post on Horrabridge Noticeboard or post contact details here.



Local national news of the week is the winding up of one of the biggest and smartest hotels and venues in the area – The Moorland Garden, on Roborough Down.

Wedding receptions and other booked events, such as their popular outdoor Shakespeare season, have been cancelled, and a letter sent out this week advises people who have already paid deposits or bought tickets to contact their insurers or credit-card companies, because there are not going to be enough funds to pay all creditors. About 60 staff, kept on by the furlough scheme until now, have been given notice, according to Devon Live, the news service run by evening papers publishers Reach PLC.

They say the owners for the past nine years have been Brian and Sonia Meaden, parents of Dragons Den star Deborah Meaden. But it appears the couple had to call in independent administrators after a complicated partnership deal fell through last year and then attempts to sell the business as a going concern, along with the splendid art deco property, were scuppered by the lockdown. They originally invited offers in the region of £2m but the administrators are about to settle for a lot less. All calls to the hotel are being referred to an accountancy firm.

The estate agents, Savills of Exeter, say the sale is not yet completed and they can give no information on what the prospective new owners have planned. But the local word is upmarket sheltered housing. No planning applications known of yet but something like the Churchill Homes development in Tavistock sounds likely the way we hear it.



Some time off yet, but a lot of people might want to make a diary note of the annual open meeting of the Community Association, which runs village use of the school hall – and note the October deadline for getting questions or proposals on the agenda.

The school governors have so far been allowed to take the safest option, which is to deny all public access. But not all are happy and several village sports associations think some reasonable compromise has to be found. There are new demands arising out of the new social situation and some debate is likely about possible ways forward.

The current chairman, former army major Chris Butterworth, is moving to Saltash and will be standing down. Meanwhile, he has issued the following announcement

* The Community Association AGM is planned for 7pm Mon 9th Nov 2020 at the School. The minutes of the last AGM can be found on the Community Association page of Horrabridge Primary School website:

Any points for the agenda or nominations for the Executive Committee should be submitted to by Fri 23 Oct. This is in line with the constitution and will allow the agenda to be published on the school website 2 weeks prior to the meeting.

The meeting date and location is subject to change if there is a COVID second wave or if restrictions are in place that will stop the AGM from convening. In this case the meeting will be re-arranged or held remotely.



Dartmoor National Park Authority is cruising for a bruising, it looks like, by calling on emergency powers to ban wild camping for at least a month, on the grounds that too many people are escaping lockdown that way, especially at Bellever, where the whole area is said to need “time to recover”.

The ban comes into force this Friday, 7th of August , for 27 days and the Devon & Cornwall Police Commissioner is sending in coppers with National Park Marshal badges to assist the usual Rangers in enforcement.

DNPA says: Dartmoor has experienced significant increases in the numbers of people camping overnight, in tents, motorhomes and camper vans, many in breach of National Park byelaws. At Bellever there have been unsustainable levels of anti-social behaviour with littering, human waste and fires causing damage to habitats and animals.
“On one night in July, 70 tents were recorded at Bellever. Fifty fire pits were counted along a 500m length of riverbank. Large amounts of debris including broken bottles, plastic bottles and bags, disposable barbecues, wet wipes and used toilet paper had been abandoned there.

“The levels of human waste is such that the Authority is concerned it’s creating another, wholly avoidable, health hazard at a time when public services are still battling the global Covid-19 pandemic.”



A Radio 4 panel of cookery experts known as the Kitchen Cabinet was asked to discuss the great question – What are the extra three sides for on a four-sided grater?

None of them could think of anything the finer teeth could do which was not usually more trouble than it’s worth. Which fits in nicely with the general rule of life, often quoted here in The Shed, that three quarters of just about everything is probably a bit crap really.

And that’s all for now …

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Editor of The Horrabridge Times.


  1. Thanks for having us at your boot sale and good luck in raising funds for the club. We will be back again soon and hopefully find more treasure next time.

    Chris & Bell

  2. The Horrabridge badminton club has been emailing the chairman of the community association and in the last week the chair of the governors, with a view to restarting badminton and other sports in the evening at the community hall, from the first week in September. Guidelines have been issued from badminton England which would allow safe use for the club and also afterwards for the School. I have urged the chairs to read through these guidelines and to advise us of any further action, if needed, that would allow sport groups to start using the hall again. Mike King , Secretary of Horrabridge Badminton Club.

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