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Dartmoor Characters

Dartmoor on a Motorcycle

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Dartmoor is more than capable for setting challenges of all shapes and sizes but probably one of the more stranger of such took place over one hundred years ago. It involved a man, a vintage motorcycle and over fifteen miles of the moor’s rugged landscape. The man was Mr. J. …

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‘Just William’ on Dartmoor

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  As a boy I loved the ‘Just William’ books which were written by Richmal Crompton, William was my hero, always into mischief but ever the lovable rogue. In many ways he somewhat reflected my childhood spending his days roaming his village and countryside on his various adventures and misadventures. …

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Stanley Thurston

Dartmoor Prison

On the 26th of March 1941 the Western Morning News published the following report under the headline of ,”Vanished from Dartmoor.” It read: “Stanley Thurston the man who boasted that no English goal could hold him, escaped from Dartmoor Prison yesterday morning and was still at large up to a …

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Watchmaker of Lydford

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This is not a legend as such but it is one of those quirky things that are a ‘must see’ if you are in Lydford. Tucked neatly to the right of the church porch is a small rectangular grave. It’s obviously much visited as there is a small track worn …

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William Crossing

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Many people say that you either love Dartmoor or loathe it, I would slightly disagree insomuch as there is a third emotion regarding Dartmoor and that is obsession. It truly can become an addictive place for all sorts of reasons and it is this third category that the writer William …

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Dartmoor Shepherd Letters

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One of the most famous and perhaps lovable convicts who have had the pleasure of a spell in Dartmoor Prison has to be David Davies, aka Evans, also known as the Dartmoor Shepherd. For a series of petty crimes he served at total of some 50 years in various gaols …

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Tom Penny

Tom Penny

It is a well known fact that moor folk, especially the farmers like a drop of the hard stuff from time to time. Which is no wonder when you consider the cold climate, any way of ‘warming your cockles’ is appreciated. It is also a well known fact that on …

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Tom Pearse

Tom Pearse

Tom Pearce. Tom Pearce, lend me your grey mare, All along, down along, out along lee, For I want for to go to Widdecombe Fair… The chances are that any mention of Devon and Tom Pearse will immediately bring to mind the famous Widecombe Fair folk song and how he …

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Tom Leek

Tom Leek

What happened was back in the days when a pint of cider cost an old penny. A local moorman who will remain nameless (Tom Crossman) for fear of embarrassing his kin folk took a Friday night stroll down to the inn. It was a warm night and so by the …

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Tom Cobley

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The old saying of ‘Old Uncle Tom Cobley and All‘ is often used to describe an all encompassing assemblage of people. It is from here that the name ‘Uncle Tom Cobley‘ has become recognised along with the famous folk song – Widdecombe Fair. There is much fierce dispute as to …

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