Devon is…

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Type “Devon is” into google and it comes up with

Devon is the best place to live

AND this is based on real facts: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/4359608/Devon-named-as-the-best-place-to-live-in-England.html

But is this the actual REAL truth?

The best way to decide is to look at what Devon has to offer…

Me

I would class myself as a true ‘Devonian’.

If anyone asks me where I am from I will always answer “Devon”, and say it in a way that shows how I am proud of my roots.

I have lived in Devon for over 25 years, I took my first steps here, went all the way from Primary School through Secondary Education to University studies (at Exeter) here, and even took my second, first steps in Plymouth’s Derriford hospital.

Obviously, I am not all that Devon has to offer though…

The views

Whether it be from the highest point on Dartmoor, walking through the woods or with sand beneath your feet at the beach, Devon has some of the most beautiful landscapes this Country has to offer.

Anyone that follows me on Instagram (@LizMolly) or twitter (@lizzy_oldershaw) will be used to my constant uploads of Devon’s beautiful scenery.

Here are a few of my favourites:

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Ladies Woods in the Spring

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My Secret Cove in the Summer

The River Avon in the Autumn

The River Avon in the Autumn

Sharpham on a Winter Day

Sharpham on a Winter’s Day

And along with these beautiful views to take in there are also some amazing organisations to be involved with, but I just wanted to mention a couple…

SSB (Sustainable South Brent) http://www.sustainablesouthbrent.org.uk

Where else would you find a local organisation that is so keen to get their village into all things sustainable, holding events for the community and raising awareness through recycling schemes and workshops. They even linked into Team v Devon’s ‘building the sustainable generation’ campaign and were a huge support.

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AND

Young Devon http://www.youngdevon.org

Our collective desire to find ways of helping young people find their own pathway to fulfilment is strongly re-enforced by our genuine commitment to “being there”. This means ensuring real accessibility & availability when it is needed most. Treating every young person individually, by using a person-centered approach, with an emphasis on recognizing personal strengths is also key in our way of working.

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I have so much love for this incredible organisation. Everyone involved is so passionate about their work which can be seen in the amazing work that they do. I have recently become a mentor for a young carer through them AND Team v Devon are linking up with them for our next campaign ‘Love is…?’

https://beta.vinspired.com/love-is

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But maybe even more importantly is…

The Food

London may have hundreds of different places to eat, and enough Maccy D’s to feed the entire World, but, I personally believe in quality over quantity the whole way…

Here are my top 5 places for food in Devon:

1. The Fish Deli http://www.thefishdeli.co.uk

You wouldn’t be able to enjoy Devon food without enjoying the seafood it has to offer…

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You walk into the shop and the first thing that hits you is the gorgeous smell coming from the kitchen where Nick and his team are busy creating fishy masterpieces; from French bouillabaisses to my personal favourite, the smoked mackerel and horseradish pate. Not only do they have a great selection of local, sustainably caught fish, they also have a huge array of different olives, freezers packed full of delicious treats and more dry stores than you would ever need.

The best bit about the shop though is the advice you get, you can go in not knowing what you want to eat for supper and come out with all the ingredients along with a ‘Nick special’ recipe and great tips and advice.

You wouldn’t get this sort of food shopping experience in Tesco…or outside of Devon come to think of it!

But if you just fancy going out for some fish you should visit…

2. The Oyster Shack http://www.oystershack.co.uk/home.php

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If you venture down towards the coast you come across this little gem.

WIth a great selection of local seafood, from crab and lobster to bowls full of mussels it is the perfect place to get your fish fix.

And to wash it all down they have a great selection of cocktails and mocktails which go swimmingly with the fantastic food.

Another great place to eat out is…

3. The Turtley Corn Mill http://www.turtleycornmill.com

So this Summer I lost my Internet Dating virginity.

And this is where I did it.

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When it comes to eating out I hold a special place in my heart for the Mill.

My favourite dish is the pork belly. In the Summer they serve it with chips and coleslaw and it is melt in the mouth DELICIOUS.

The atmosphere is perfect for any occasion, believe me I would know. So far I have had first dates, my sister’s 18th, Valentine’s Day with my ex, catch up with my besties Kate and Faye with a three course meal, laughing until we cried with Faith, Emma and Holly over hot chocolates and even a couple of second dates…

Somewhere else that holds many special memories is…

4. On The Waterfront http://www.waterfrontexeter.co.uk

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Yes.

Your eyes are not deceiving you.

That IS the size of the pizza.

16 inches…and we all know what they say…size matters…

With a huge selection of different toppings from ‘Fiesta Mexicana’ to  ‘Montpellier Duck’, if you want pizza this is the place to go.

With gorgeous views of the River Ex, where in the Summer is the perfect place for some amazing people watching.

You may have also seen it recently on the channel 4 programme ‘The Undateables’. http://www.channel4.com/programmes/the-undateables/4od#3643997 From this you can see that it is a great place for a first date too!

Somewhere that I would love to be taken on a date (wink, wink, nudge, nudge) is…

5. The Barbican Kitchen http://barbicankitchen.com

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For a very special Birthday treat my lovely friend Kate took me out for lunch here.

Set on the historical Barbican, based in the Plymouth Gin Distillery and run by the famous Tanner brothers, this restaurant uses local produce to make masterpieces rather than just food.

I’m salivating just thinking about it…

As does this…

Cream THEN jam

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You can’t beat a Devon cream team.

The cream goes on first. Then the jam. That is the Devon way.

With a good brew you just can’t beat a Devon cream tea.

One of my favourite cream teas was on the Cathedral Green in Exeter.

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Which brings me onto my last great thing about Devon,

The History

Exeter Cathedral was founded in 1050…now if that isn’t historical I don’t know what is!

Everywhere you look there are little bits of history in Devon.

From the Bronze Aged Stone Circles on Dartmoor to the vast Georgian houses to the bombed out church in Plymouth which is a reminder of the bombings that occurred in the World Wars.

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But enough about the history…it is now that I am interested in…

I think we have been able to come to the conclusion that Devon is the best place for eating, being swept away by beautiful landscapes and being involved in local and sustainable ventures, but for me, it is the feeling of being a Devonian that really shines through.

And the way that being a Devonian makes you feel special it also makes you think different.

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This ‘different thinking’ makes signs like these more than acceptable in Devon:

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So, seeing as ‘Devon is the best place to live’, I think this sign pretty much summarises what I would like to say to you:

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Look forward to seeing you soon 🙂

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