Dateline Sunday 23rd April

Potpourri Node At Ropery Road

The younger set spent Sunday morning at Woolacombe beach either running or swimming or both, whilst the Golden Wedding pair stayed at the gaff preparing their next fellowship meeting. Lunch was planned by daughter-in-law at Comyn Farm near Ilfracombe.
Streetview breathed its last at Chambercombe Manor …
… but the road (interesting use of the term) continued to Comyn whereat Sunday Lunch was booked. It was a weird building, panted grey and with no obvious entrance!
So much so that a phone call was needed to be advised “go round the side, over the bridge.” It did not look promising lunch-wise!

Bravely No 1 son tried the only door, welcomingly made of varnished oak under an imposing portico. NOT!

But, once inside, things looked a little more positive.

There was a pong of potentially provided provender and a friendly welcome. A choice of four starters and four “mains” plus four puds was offered on the non-existent decal edged menu cards. 

Most of the party had the traditional roast as their “main” and what a feast it was.

The table was soon groaning with the widest selection of veg fbb has ever been invited to chomp. And fbb was inwardly groaning as he sought to do the main course justice. It was a tough job but someone had to do it! fbb managed an apple crumble for pud as well!

The place was utterly weird and astoundingly wonderful all at the same time and at £25 per head for three courses and drinks it was very good value by today’s standards.
“But,” we hear our reader cry, “this a public transport blog and not a restaurant review?”
Stick with it, we’re getting there!
Somewhat replete, the party repaired to Ilfracombe agreeing to meet up in the Co-op car park. Sadly, No 1 son made it to Lidl’s car park and at a second attempt there was a coming together (not literally!) in Ropery Road .car park.
fbb should have remembered, but initially didn’t! 
But there was the car ark hidden behind St Philip and St James Church.

‘So what?” you may ask.

Because of the one way system, the fbbs approached from the opposite end …

… and below is Ropery Road from the early 1900s before much of the aging fisherman’s housing had ben demolished.

Note the spire of the church!

But, as soon as the fbbs entered the car park …
… the old man remembered. He was parking in the former Ilfracombe bus station!
At the far end was a small depot …

… and near the present vehicular entrance was an office block plus travel shop.

With the sale of the former Southern National business to First Bus, it was not long before this block was offered for sale …

… and, as no one wanted it, it was later demolished to make extra parking space.

Likewise the depot fell into  disuse …

… and was demolished for even more extra parking.

Thanks to a “couldn’t care less” attitude from First Bus, the decline continued inexorably. From a poor quality bus station …

… it became a tatty and uninviting dump.

All that remains of its depressing past is the railings that once adorned the saw-tooth bays, offering inadequate protection from vehicle misjudgement to waiting passengers. There never was any protection from the weather!

So as fbb parked, there were the recycled railings painted a fetching blue.

The car park is still a dump!

But buses still call at the forlorn single shelter on Ropery Road …

… where intending or potential passengers can feast their eyes and their minds on the lavish information displays.

What few buses there are today from Ropery Road now stand at St James’ Place outside the church …

… before traversing the narrow road past the long gone Ropery Road bus station.

 Next Holiday Variety blog : Wednesday 26th April 
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