Arriving by foot at Royal William Yard was better than the usual car journey through town. At the end of the Devonport Heritage Trail, we carried on walking through Stonehouse. There’s an eclectic mix of properties, historical buildings, spectacular waterside scenery, and sights across to the Cornish countryside.
A sign drew our attention to the Cremyll Ferry. Very tempting; we pondered whether to take the eight-minute boat ride across the River Tamar to Mount Edgecumbe, or the shorter trip to Plymouth’s Barbican but, in the end, Royal William Yard won.
On approach, the flowerbeds at Telegraph Wharf are eye-catching, especially one where the plants are delicate and grow in the shade of an old boating winch. An innovative and nostalgic touch representing the area’s nautical activities.
Inside the location, there is a busy atmosphere where shops, and varied restaurants offer all types of cuisine. I’ve frequented a few over the years and never been disappointed.
The Yard is Plymouth’s cultural quarter. A must-go-to area there is Ocean Studios and Real Ideas Café. In the past, I’ve attended a poetry workshop and poets reading evening, and I’m sure similar events would be welcomed again.
Talented artists, makers, and designers display their work. The art is stunning, but I found the jewellery, homeware, and glass exhibits particularly inspiring.
Visitors are welcome to view the whole building. Upstairs sewing machinists were in action when we went, but we didn’t stop, so as not to disturb creations in progress.
Some of the outside walls are protected with boldly painted hoardings with matching furniture. The courtyard makes a cheerful place to sit and appreciate the surroundings. It’s a stark contrast to the stone architecture of what was the Royal Navy’s main victualling yard. Modern and old meet, and complement each other.
There are also individual outlets, such as a pottery, and Make 140. The latter is a shop selling dressmaking fabrics, kits, and haberdashery. It’s a sewing hub that’s great to browse around and whenever I go there, I promise myself that I’ll book up for one of the workshops, but so far have never got around to doing so. One day, I will!
Until next time,