Another red-hot day. We were up early, in a good mood preparing for departure, when our spirits were deflated by a bloke who asked us where we were heading. He expressed amazement when I said St. Delaward and he said it was about twenty five miles away. Thanks.
We set off feeling slightly anxious, and by eleven we'd only reached Cosnance and my feet were hurting. More blisters. We reached Little Slademere soon after and decided to get a bus the rest of the way. We asked an old lady for directions and set off through fields of corn and down a narrow, sunny lane for Wadeshayle Bridge.
Wadeshayle Bridge seems a nice place but we couldn’t really tell from what we saw. We caught the ferry across to Penstone where we had our sandwiches and sat about in the blistering heat watching and waiting. The next bus took us to Bolwen which seems the most ‘sincere’ town we’ve visited here, everything perfectly unpretentious and ‘natural’. We had hassles galore as we tried to get our connection; I read the timetable wrong and we were both plunged into the blackest of moods and I was about to start looking for a ‘phone to call up the station when the bus finally arrived.
We reached St. Delaward at teatime after a superb journey through the ‘interior’ which is just as I imagined it would be. St. Delaward is incredible; the romantic stigma of the place, the atmosphere, and the scenery is all as I’d imagined. The church was filled with flowers and was deathly quiet apart from the buzzing of bees. St. Delaward Castle brooded up on the dark cliffs.
The hostel is at the end of a long, dusty track perched at the very westward edge of the cliffs and as we arrived the sun blazed along the horizon. Bob, the warden, served tea outside and everyone ate on the cliff edge, the sea and sky incandescent. Grant and I agreed that the place has the easy, primitive and informal atmosphere of a friendly commune.