Category: Travel

Just another hole in the wall!

STORMY WATCHET.

During the high tides and winter storms Watchet harbour wall was damaged just before Christmas. Overnight the Victorian Sea defenses were breached leaving a hole which was rapidly filled with 3 ton boulders as an emergency repair. The subsequent battering from storm Ciara in February and then storm Dennis only a week later, removed tons of concrete , stone work and  the emergency placed boulders creating such a large hole that work is still ongoing today.

The following is a poem written by one of our Watchet Poets, inspired by the hole in the wall.

Perhaps we don’t know the truth at all?

WHAT THE OCEAN SAW.

Statutesquely, it lay, plotting its escape from behind the old sea wall,

Calculating its imminent hatch between rhythmic tides and seagull’s call, 

Sustaining solely on saltwater and a few errant sea creatures, 

Discreetly tucked amongst the breakwater-defence’s still features. 

For about a hundred years it sat, its patience growing  incredibly small,

Until one dark night, in utter despair, it broke through the harbour wall, 

The wall shook and roared and the tide paused a minute, 

Curiously teasing at the harbour wall and what it had hid in it. 

And then without a warning and with a triumphant shout,

The beast behind the harbour wall shot, canonically, out,

In the pale moonlight, it remained, blinking, startlingly blue-eyed, 

Drinking in the salty-spray, under the stars, It’s deep-longing; satisfied. 

It ducked under the swell and stretched out a hundred years of wrinkles, 

Breathing in its ocean home, toothily smiling at rock-bound winkles.

Returning to the height it once had, its skin glowing with the dew of the tide and contented bliss,

It stared, disdainfully back at the stone cage, that it knew, it would not miss.

Its Clam-shell heart soaring to its luna love, it caught a wild wave in haste,

And rode it fast and far away, jaw dripping with freedoms fresh taste.

The ocean caressed the empty pit, her hands soft with morning

With a sigh, she wished the beast, ‘bon voyage’ and felt a new day dawning,

As the sun tickled the ocean’s curves, She recounted the night to her frothing history, 

A harsh whistling wind, a grand escape and a Conan Doyle-esk, unravelled mystery.

The people came the next day and postured the consequences of a crumbling sea wall, 

Many of us had theories, but only she knows of that night’s events,  for the ocean saw it all.

Deanna Payne ‘Twitch’

(Photograph courtesy of Terry Walker)

Watchet 1940s Weekend

ARE YOU READY FOR THE INVASION?

The clocks go back at the weekend to the 1940s.

The bunting has been sewn, plans have been made, props have been built, dresses have been bought, menus selected and panic has taken over!

The 13th, 14th and 15th September will see Watchet invaded by large groups of re-enactors. As part of the West Somerset Railway ’40s Weekend, Watchet once again goes all out to re-create a 1940s town. Shops and businesses will have bomb taped windows, shop windows will be dressed, cafes and pubs will serve 40s fare.

The air raid sirens will sound and the trains will carry military hardware.

FRIDAY INVASION

Friday sees the invasion of 140 evacuees! They will arrive by train and be taken to the Methodist hall where they will be allocated their families. Receive a lunch of spam sandwiches and cake and their allotted sweet ration.

In the Boat Museum, music from Betty Bluebird will be part of the evening celebration.

SATURDAY INVASION

The arrival of the re-enactors from all over the country  will see Watchet’s population explode! Saturday has a full program of entertainment on the Esplanade, with Brass bands, community choir, stalls, 40s singing groups and individuals. Military vehicles and personnel moving around the town. Tea shops filled with cake and pubs with liver and onions!!!

SUNDAY INVASION

Uniformed personnel will attend a church service on Sunday morning at the war memorial this will start the day rightly remembering those who gave their lives for our freedom. Then the music will begin once again on the esplanade, time for dancing and having fun. Drinking tea, eating cake and enjoying the afternoon sun (which has been booked!)until we can do no more.

By 5 o’clock we’ll all be full of cake, feet will ache, heads will be pounding and we’ll ll be totally exhausted!! Don’t forget……………….

ONLY A YEAR TO PREPARE FOR THE NEXT ONE!!

Watchet is Volunteer Central…

HOW WATCHETY……

Watchet is blessed with a huge number of willing volunteers. Volunteers that love music, volunteers that love gardening, those that love art, those that love the 40s, those that love books, those who love trains…………..I could go on and on.

This weekend we have Watchet Festival. A three day extravaganza of music, poetry and art. The bass re-verbs around town into the night and the happy folk who are partying on the hill enjoy the views of the sea and sunshine especially requested for this weekend!

Why do I mention the festival?

Well without the volunteers the festival just wouldn’t be Watchety! Volunteers on security. Volunteers on maintenance, on stewarding, on car parking  duty just to name a few of the jobs that locals love to fill.

DRIVING PASSED

As I drove passed yesterday evening at 11.30pm. Music throbbing, lights flashing, happy shouting and singing. There  sat by the side of the road with their flask of tea and…………………. ear defenders on were a couple of local ‘retirees’ on car parking duty!

How Watchety is that!!!

I just love to see those embracing the volunteer ethos, our town is full of these amazing people who give up their time to keep things running smoothly.  Age is no barrier,  just keep doing what you’re doing you are really appreciated.

QUOTING THE BELL MAN

To quote our Town Crier ‘don’t come to Watchet to retire, come to Watchet to live!’

HOW TRUE!