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66


BY GILL MATTHEWS


It isn’t all about flowers www.kingsbridgeinbloom.co.uk


M


aintaining local heritage features is also part of our brief.


The old Railway Bridge, the Lime Kiln and the Schooner all reflect important aspects of the town’s history. Information boards at these sites whet your appetite and your next port of call would, of course, be the excellent Cookworthy Museum. Our tenth anniversary merited something special and as luck would have it along came a new heritage feature. Local farmer Graham Fairweather offered us a traditional Devon hay cart constructed by Farr Brothers of East Charleton about a hundred years ago. These carts were light and manoeuvrable enabling them to cope with the steep, narrow Devon lanes. An initial inspection revealed


that considerable renovation would need to be undertaken. Three areas underneath were of special concern so partial disassembly took place giving easy access. The


paint was stripped back to bare wood by hand and power tools where appropriate. Woodworm treatment was applied followed by wood stabiliser to prevent further deterioration. No woodworm were encountered although plenty of evidence was! Wood filler was applied especially to one of the wheels. The entire cart was sanded down then primed ready for the two


in traditional, bright red and blue completed the job. A dedicated team met at least once


a week working through the coldest weather. The open-sided storage barn was dry, except when the rain was horizontal, but a freezing wind was often howling through. Spirits were kept high with flasks of hot coffee and the telling of silly jokes. When the sound of chattering teeth nearly matched the noise of the power tools it was time to go home! Now proudly installed in its new home at the head of the estuary, the cart reflects the strong agricultural connections of Kingsbridge. A volunteer in wellies and straw was perched on hay bales on the cart to greet the RHS judges. The cart is fast


or three layers of undercoat, making it look like a ‘ghost cart’. Another two or three layers, depending on where it was being applied, of marine paint


becoming the place for a photograph for visitors. Our grateful thanks go to the Fairweather family for their lovely gift to the town.


Get in Touch! Kingsbridge in Bloom Chairman: Graham Price on 01548 854488 or via Quay House • Monthly draw: Chris 01548 852160


chris@barnwell.eclipse.co.ukwww.kingsbridgeinbloom.co.uk


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