Lower Dart Egress

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RSquared
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Lower Dart Egress

Post by RSquared » Thu Sep 10, 2015 9:20 pm

Does anyone know what egress to use for Lower Dart this season? Understand Butterfly Farm still closed to us and that on FaceBook "The river dart cafe/moguls palace were ceased from trading today by the landlord. The gates are locked and no one is allowed access to the site. The landlord has taken back possession and closed the site, this includes the land the other side of the fence and where we get out."
Canoe Club taking some beginners to Lower Dart in Nov.

Thanks

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John K
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Re: Lower Dart Egress

Post by John K » Sun Oct 11, 2015 6:11 pm

Anyone got any news on this? We're heading down next weekend, and it looks like there won't be enough water for anything higher up.

Mark Dixon
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Re: Lower Dart Egress

Post by Mark Dixon » Mon Oct 12, 2015 9:36 pm

Theres no rain forecasted and I doubt you'll get down the Lower Dart, your best chance will be from Austins Bridge down to Staverton.

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John K
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Re: Lower Dart Egress

Post by John K » Tue Oct 13, 2015 6:41 am

Thanks. I was actually thinking of getting on at Buckfastleigh, not off, so working along the same lines. What's the access like at Austins Bridge? Is there any parking?

Access at Staverton for the get out doesn't look great either.

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Re: Lower Dart Egress

Post by Mark Dixon » Tue Oct 13, 2015 7:05 am

Theres plenty of access, I suggest you unload at Austins bridge or in the layby nearer the weir, then sort out a shuttle to Staverton where the Railway Car Park (50p to be paid in the stn) takes about 6 cars and there is room for plenty in surrounding areas close by. Its a nice pleasant paddle and you can get down it ok at its current level, it will be scrapy in places though.
Mark

Edit: Make sure you get out RL just above the bridge as they are pretty angry people just after the bridge, paddlers with disability will be better to continue downstream a few hundred yards on RL

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John K
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Re: Lower Dart Egress

Post by John K » Tue Oct 13, 2015 7:38 am

Excellent. Thanks!

pete thorn
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Re: Lower Dart Egress

Post by pete thorn » Mon Nov 23, 2015 2:30 pm

I work in a voluntary capacity as Regional Waterways Adviser for British Canoeing, covering Cornwall, Devon and Somerset. I have had discussions this autumn with the South Devon Railway to regain access/egress at the station/butterfly farm carpark. They are not at all keen, as previously people got changed indiscreetly, rarely visited their cafe, left cars after their carpark closed and parked causing obstructions when the car park was closed. They seemed to have a fair point.
At what was the Moghal Palace, there are new owners who I have yet to contact, though have tried. The lower land near the river would make a good access point and worth exploring a lease or purchase. Any contacts would be welcome. In the meantime it seems viable to take out on river right just below the old bridge and carry up and over a low wall to access the layby.
The field upstream of the bridge belongs to the Abbey and I met with their rep last year together with the Town Council. The Town Council have a long term plan to encourage outdoor sports and increase access to the river.The Abbey rep appeared to have no objection to people landing there, provided care was taken about fences, gates and livestock. It appears some folk don't take that care so a reaction, as described in the Egress Lower Dart facebook page, seems inevitable. I only learnt of this page today so that's why I haven't contributed. I have applied to join. It would be good to be invited to any other relevant Facebook pages which people set up.
If anyone gets a contact name and number for the farmer/Abbey rep then please let me have it and I will follow up.
Pete Thorn

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Re: Lower Dart Egress

Post by pete thorn » Mon Nov 23, 2015 9:08 pm

Sorry! I meant river left below the old bridge. Doh
Pete Thorn

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Re: Lower Dart Egress

Post by pete thorn » Fri Nov 27, 2015 8:24 am

The Abbey field had some fencing panels fitted where lazy bones paddlers have taken a direct route through the fence to the layby and damaged it. There is a longer route across the field and over the stile. I have yet to speak to the Abbey as no response to email. But better news below the bridge. Met the new owner of the Moghal Palace site. He is OK with people taking out or putting in below the bridge on river left, provided his new fencing is not damaged. In the longer term he is developing the site with a cafe, restaurant and farm shop. He is in favour of creating an access road to the riverside site with at least twenty parking spaces. Provided people use his cafe and spend some money he will be fine with paddlers parking there. It won't be in place till next season but sounds ideal. He is looking for local grants to help with costs. BC capital grants are only available for property we own.
Pete Thorn

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Re: Lower Dart Egress

Post by pete thorn » Sat Jun 25, 2016 7:12 am

Update on this.... The cafe is next to the old bridge in Buckfastleigh. It's now open and the lower car park is complete. Now confirmed that paddlers are welcome to park there, free, provided they give the cafe some business. So please don't use his outside tables to scoff your own food. Best to check on the closing time of the cafe when you park, so you don't get locked in. The manager was very helpful at the prospect of extra winter business.
Access to the water is easy, at the end of the lower car park there is a good eddy where a small stream comes in.
Pete Thorn

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