Having decided to make a day out of our visit to yet another live opera screening at the Vue in Torquay, we wended through the South Hams again making in the first instance for what was Keith Floyd‘s old pub the Maltster’s Arms in the small riverside hamlet of Tuckenhay (click through…very interesting history) where we thought we would lunch. The pub and the setting were terrific, loads of interesting rooms some with Floyd memorabilia, but the stairs from the car park to the main pub rooms passed the kitchen’s pass which we both noted was really messy and didn’t augur well for standards, so having had a quick drink off we went to the next village along the river towards Dartmouth – Dittisham where we knew from consulting the Good Pub Guide that there were two likely pubs. The views on the way there reminded us why we always liked this part of the country (why did we ever leave?!), and the village itself is delightful – steep lanes leading down to the river and the waterside pub The Ferryboat Inn or FBI as it likes to be known.
A good choice…here is the view from the pub’s window….
and the cheerful interior, all a pub should be….
It is very small and crowded when we arrived but the service was excellent and we managed to sit at a table reserved for just over an hour later. Just in time to enjoy a pint and fish and chips. The pub has its own jetty from which a ferries operate both to Agatha Christie’s house on the opposite bank and to Dartmouth…if there’s a nicer river trip I don’t know it. The river is extremely wide here as you can see.
We then decided to have a look at Brixham which we didn’t know too well. great location with a working fishing fleet but all a bit tatty including the replica Golden Hind..
yet another British town, of which there are so many which, with a bit of money spent on them (well quite a lot of money) could be really really nice…. we decided we much preferred Dartmouth.
Having spent a lot of time in traffic jams in Torquay and Paignton looking for a garage which dispensed lpg we arrived at the Vue rather frazzled. However La Boheme was magnificent. Terrific music but Puccini could have done with a better story and librettist in both our opinions….a Gilbert to his Sullivan. Opera plots really are very silly.
The main role of Mimi was played by Sonya Yoncheva whom we had recently seen as Tosca. All the singers were top-notch. Worth missing the England rugby international for!