Exeter is one of those places that I've been to many times but have never really got to know very well. A good hour an a half from home, it used to be the destination for major shopping trips, as it had all the major shops we didn't have in Cornwall. Today I discovered another side to the city and was quite enchanted by it.
Just off the main road driving into the city we went to explore the quay area. What a gem it is! Glorious in the sunshine and a sheltered waterside place in which to sit and watch the world go by.
|The river from halfway across the ferry crossing|
We crossed the river on quite possibly the smallest ferry I've ever come across. We could easily have walked over the footbridge a very short distance away, but it seemed like much more fun to pay 30p (yes - 30p! What can you get for that nowadays?) to stand in a little boat and be ferried by a man pulling on a length of chain strung across the river.
I immediately fell in love with this selection of white painted metalwork. I so want one of these birdcages - sadly I just don't have the room.
I was totally enchanted by this selection of clocks for sale. All mock antique, they were really quite charming.
I wanted this lamp so much it hurt. However I already have a very pretty lamp on my bedside table, and hubby was adamant he wasn't have this his side so we left it there.
How beautiful is this garden bench? Hewn from a very large tree root, it was super smooth. I can just imagine it placed under a shady tree.
As well as the craft shops there are also several antique shops to mosey around. All in all a very pleasant afternoon indeed - if you get the chance to visit you won't be dissappointed.
A BRIEF HISTORY (as told by Exeter Tourist Information)
Today the population of Exeter is estimated as 123,500. It is the Capital of Devon, and as such is home to Devon County Council. It is located on the River Exe.
The Latin name for Exeter is Isca Dumnoniorum, Exeter began as a Roman town, The Romans arrived in the Southwest about 50 AD. Exeter was the most south-westerly Roman fortified settlement in Britain and has existed since time. Exeter Cathedral, founded in the early 12th century, is Anglican.
The Exeter Canal was built in 1558, making it one of the oldest artificial waterways in Britain. In 1905 horse drawn trams were replaced by electric trams. The last tram ran in 1931. They in turn were replaced by buses. Exeter airport opened in 1937.
Exeter has been identified as one of the top ten most profitable locations for a business to be based.
The city has good transport links, with Exeter St David's railway station, Exeter Central railway station, the M5 motorway and Exeter Airport connecting the city both nationally and internationally. Also Exeter has a variety of car/ van hire places for all travelling needs. Although a popular tourist destination, the city is not dominated by tourism.
Exeter also offers a wide range of b&b's and hotels to suit every occasion's from holidays to business trips.
Today most of the workforce in Exeter is employed in service industries such as tourism, education and public administration. Several new shopping centres have been built such as Guildhall Shopping Centre, which was built in 1977. Harlequins Shopping Centre followed in 1986. Princesshay Shopping Centre opened in 2007.