Head west for bale-tossing, sheep-shearing, cream teas and breathtaking views.
What’s so special about Widecombe-in-the-Moor?
Well, plenty. For a start, it’s arguably the prettiest of Dartmoor’s villages. A photogenic ensemble of village green shaded by oak, chestnut and copper beech trees, a loftily-towered church and ancient, grey-stone dwellings, Widecombe-in-the-Moor sits in a sheltered valley setting, backdropped by gaunt, granite-strewn ridges (widecombe-in-the-moor.com).
Isn’t there a folk song based there?
Indeed there is. You’re thinking of Widecombe Fair, whose lyrics tell the tale of a group of men, including one Uncle Tom Cobley, heading out across the moor to the fair. Sad to say, the old grey mare in the story dies on the journey. But fear not, the country fair is still very much alive and kicking after 170 years, and is one of the biggest annual events in Devon’s calendar. It features the likes of bale-tossing, sheep-shearing competitions and the Uncle Tom Cobley Downhill Race (Sep 10; widecombefair.com).