Down in the valleys and in the woods the British Native Bluebells carpet the floor, a pale purple haze which in the warm sunshine sends out a soft spring scent – Not a sight that lasts long, following on from our humble yellow primrose and preceding the shy woodland violet.
A lot of footpaths follow the old postman’s paths from hamlet to hamlet and village to village, through fields and over styles and through native woodland with bursting leaf buds, ending in picture perfect villages where you will find a local Inn with good local beer and delicious food to refresh the weary traveller. Such a walk can be undertaken from Sheepstor village near Yelverton – best known for being the lasts resting place of the White Rajahs of Sarawak, Sheepstor Church is usually open during the day and worth a visit to admire the ornate trellis work. Taking the road (Portland Lane) opposite the church and following the signed footpath to Marchants Cross, you will walk through a farm lane, up through green fertile fields, over an interesting style and through the bluebell wood to Yeo Farm on the outskirts of Meavy. Here you will find Merchants cross and turning right pass over a narrow hairpin bridge over the river Meavy. When you reach the village a left turn past the little local school will take you through to the village green and the lovely Royal Oak Inn, which is unusually owned by the Parish Council – Both food and drink are second to none, eat and drink either in the quaint pub, or outside next to the ancient oak on the village Green. Meavy holds a village fair on the third Saturday of June with traditional Morris dancers, local food, stalls and the infamous ‘Horse Shoe’ race.
In the ditches, ponds and streams on Dartmoor the frogs ‘come a courting’ and frogspawn glisterns in the sun, a tasty treat for herons, who feast on this delicacy for weeks –
Frogs are not the only ones to go courting in the spring, our amorous Peacock likes to check out his reflection –