Discover history and spectacular views on Blackbeard's Trail
- Credit: Keith Perry
The country’s biggest pirate festival may have become a Covid casualty this year but visitors to Brixham can still shiver their timbers courtesy of Blackbeard’s Trail!
This delightful 2.5 mile walk begins on the crowded harbourside but winds its way up and away from the tourists through narrow streets lined with colourful cottages to a stunning piece of the Bay’s coastline - providing a bit of fun for younger walkers in the form of a treasure hunt at the same time.
We begin at the statue marking the arrival in the port of the future protestant king, William Prince of Orange, and his army on November 5, 1688, and nearby you will see the replica of Sir Francis Drake’s ship, The Golden Hind.
From here to Middle Street, and the site of the fisherman’s house opposite Broad Steps where William spent the night, and up the short but steep Apters Hill to Higher Street where you can make a short diversion to All Saints' Church where Henry Francis Lyte, composer of ‘Abide With Me’, was appointed curate in charge in 1824.
The route passes under the railway bridge to the right of which was the station that marked the terminus of the Torbay and Brixham Railway.
On the left you will pass Furzeham Primary School where Jim Callaghan, Prime Minister from 1973-79, was a pupil.
Follow the diagonal path across Furzeham Green to North Furzeham Road where the charming Bonsey Rose Garden is a convenient spot to enjoy the view and take a breather.
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Ahead of you are Battery Gardens and if you follow the footpath straight ahead almost to the shoreline you’ll discover the gem that is Fishcombe Cove with Churston Cove beyond that.
You are now on a section of the South West Coastal Footpath which will bring you back to the harbourside.
The walk is signed and and there are eight pirate-related symbols to collect along the way which enable you to spell out the name of a cafe on the quay where Blackbeard’s secret scroll awaits!
To get the most from the walk you'll need the excellent Blackbeard’s Trail maps which you can find online at torbay.gov.uk
The route does involve a steady uphill climb at the outset and there are several sets of steps along the way.