BRAUNTON BURROWS (DEVON).
This area actually stands on a peninsula, so it was not hard to see why American forces were trained here during the war.This was easy to cut off from prying eyes during the build up and training of troops ready for the "Normandy" landings. It is said as many as 70 or 80 landing craft with crews were amassed here, during one training sessions 21 American soldiers lost their lives.To make it easy to transport all these troops, craft, ammunition and supplies they built a road through these dunes, this is still in use and is known as the "Yankie" road.This road although not of Tarmac was built to withstand the heavy vehicles used for conveying amphibious landing craft (Ducks) and supplies, so is still there today although fairly pottholed. At the end of this road is an open flat area of beach where the "Ducks" entered and left the sea. Also here there is a slatted wooden footpath around half a mile long, this path goes right through the dunes to the sea. Although doing a search I have been unable to find when this was built, I know it has been in existence since at least the mid 60s when I first visited the dunes. It would make sense to think it was built in wartime to allow troops to move easily across these difficult to cross dunes, although that is only supposition on my part.One thing for sure is whosoever built it must have really struggled doing it.
Please click on any photograph to enlarge it.
This picture was taken from the road above Saunton Golf course, these beach huts are close to some hireable chalets and are not part of the dune system protected by a nature Biosphere.
This picture shows was again taken from the edge of the road overlooking the dune system.These dunes are Protected by a being a Nature Reserve and a Unesco Biosphere site, this is because of the amount of Flora (400 types) Insects, Birds and Animals here.
Part of the Dune system taken from half way along the "Yankie" road, the sea in the distance also a glimpse of the beach at "Appledore".
Its a shame the sun refused to shine for this shot of the end of the road, this is where its possible to access the beach by vehicle (restricted of course). This view was taken when the tide was fully out.
A view the short distance across the estuaries to "Appledore"beach, again at low water of course.
Here we are at the very start of the wooden path, this shows the path disappearing into the distance.
We took this picture around half the way along the path, it gives you an idea how difficult it must have been to build.
Nearing the end now, you can see the beach and sea from here.
Its a pity that vehicles are now stopped from going more than a third of the way along the "Yankie" road as its quite a walk to to reach this path (600yards), in the 60s and 70s you could drive right up to a car park at "Crow Point". We used to own a camper van and often spent the day in between a couple of grassy banks Picnicking, sunbathing etc.From "Braunton" (reputedly Britain's biggest village) there is also a "Toll road"which leads alongside the Estuary to a car park on the edge of the "Burrows", this road has some lovely views from the top of its high banks and in places overlooks the Airfield at "Chivenor". To get more views of this area do click on this link to BBC footage.
Joke of the day.
Yesterday I went into a Public Toilet I was barely sitting down when I heard a voice from the other stall saying: 'Hi, how are you?'
I'm not the type to start a conversation in the restroom and I don't know what got into me, but I answered, somewhat embarrassed,
'Doin' just fine!'
And the other person says:
'So what are you up to?'
What kind of question is that? At that point, I'm thinking this is too bizarre so I say:
'Uhhh, I'm like you, just traveling!'
At this point I am just trying to get out as fast as I can when I hear another question.
'Can I come over?'
Ok, this question is just too weird for me but I figured I could just be polite and end the conversation. I tell them
'No..No I'm a little busy right now!!!'
Then I hear the person say nervously...
'Listen, I'll have to call you back. There's a bloody idiot in the next stall who keeps answering all my questions
Cell phones, don't you just love them.