When Isambard Kindom Brunel pushed his Atmospheric Railway down the coast in the 1840s, Teignmouth became the second health resort in Devon. Humble occupations in salt production and fishing gave way to the demands of visitors. The wealth of affluent Victorians was significant to the re-invention of Teignmouth that had suffered a devastating invasion by the French in 1690. The 19th century saw a flurry of new business and buildings. The majority of commodities were brought in under sail and waterway traffic increased. Boat building contributed to the local economy. Clay and granite quarried nearby and barged down-river were important out-going cargoes.
Between 1940 to 44, a number of air raids claimed the lives and homes of many people. Post war regeneration re-shaped the town that now displays an interesting mix of architectural styles. Georgian cottages line narrow streets whilst Victorian structures are seen at their best along the seafront. A diminutive Orangery of 1842 is found in Bitton Park. Many of the impressive residences built on the hillsides have been converted to apartments in modern times. Enthusiasts discover extraordinary variety in seven churches and numerous public houses.
Share your experience!