Torquay Curious

(Last Updated On: August 13, 2018)

Some we know well, some we drive past every day, some are hidden, and some have stories to tell.
Here are some curious parts of our Torquay.

The 690 recorded graves of Torre’s St. Saviours – now the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Andrew – with its ‘Pirate’s Grave – actually a Memento Mori (“Remember that you have to die”)

The sea arch, known as ‘London Bridge’ since at least 1769 – but why?

The subterranean River Fleet, rarely seen but often heard outside Primark – there’s probably a metaphor here

Gallows Gate, where thousands lost their lives at the end of a rope

The New Zealand ANZAC soldiers who lie at Torquay Cemetery

Torre Abbey’s Pet Cemetery – less Stephen King and more Secret Garden, close to the beach and with ancient walls and locked doorways

Livermead’s medievil harbour

Livermead’s Hindu Caves, named in 1854 by author Charles Kingsley

St Luke’s Church. An ordinary Anglican Church on the outside; an almost Byzantine brightly coloured interior

The Victorian townscape of Rock Road and Melville Hill

The forgotten back streets: Dereliction in Rock Road

The Goats Path and the Valley of Rocks, Watcombe (Wat’s Valley)


Maidencombe’s curious castle – a Victorian folly

Torre Abbey Gardens – copied on a massive scale 3,200 miles away in Israel

The mysterious St Michaels’s Chapel. Who built it and why? Was it a pre-Christian Pagan site?

Harbreck Rock (Seagull island): Torre Abbey’s ‘now you see it; now you don’t’ island


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Kevin Dixon went to Audley Park – now Torquay Academy – and South Devon College when it was at Torre. After studying at Birmingham City University, he returned home because there’s nowhere else quite like Torquay. He then became involved in community and adult education, completed a PhD at Exeter University , and started writing about the weird and unknown side of town. He now Chairs Healthwatch Torbay and is involved in health and social care in the Bay.