Saturday, 7 November 2009

Weston Super Mare to Bridgwater - 31 October 2009 - 25 Miles

I arrived at Weston Super Mare at 10:00 after a pleasant and punctual rail trip. I made straight for the Tesco store where I stocked up on sandwiches for the journey. On arrival at the seafront I was delighted to see that a start had been made on rebuilding the pier pavilion after the recent fire. This made a welcome change from its forlorn state earlier in the year. If they can do it so quickly at Weston Super Mare, why can't they at Brighton?

Traveling south, the seafront was very attractive. Work was in progress to improve the promenade whilst the appearance of a number of new buildings and the smart Atlantic Hotel all served to enhance the area. I soon reached Uphill at 10:35, a quiet, unspoiled village with the gateway to Uphill Manor guarding the way in. The village is overlooked by the remains of a stone windmill.

After Uphill, the way followed a cycle along the A370 until a right turn led into minor roads which included a stretch alongside the main railway line. The countryside here had an "uncared for" feel about it and the road meandered until I arrived in Brean at 11:20. If you love caravan sites, Brean is for you (but not me).

I visited Berrow flats, where you can still park your car on the beach and then cycled though Berrow at 11:50, reaching Burnham on Sea by 12:10. Both Berrow and Burnham are unremarkable, although Burnham is pleasant enough after seeing so many caravans. Then along the Brue (not Blue) River Way into Highbridge at 12:30 which is a run-down and depressing place. The route then followed the A38 and minor roads through Huntspill, Stretcholt(1250) and Dunball (1325).

The cycle path alongside the A38 was then followed into Bridgwater which proved to be a very attractive place. Of particular note were the Canal Basin (Marina) a curved row of terraced houses the Old Market and the Parish Church. I drank a well earned coffee at the half-timbered Carnival Inn before catching my train to Bristol. A meal at the Dragon near Temple Meads Station set me up for the journey home.

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