27 Comments

  1. Malcolm Martyn
    11th May 2017 @ 00:25

    the best solution is to stay at home, our roads are just fine until droves of idiots turn up driving at 40 mph everywhere and clogging up COrnwalls logistic arteries…. poor driving is the real issue here, generally from tourists

    Reply

    • liz.hurley@virgin.net
      12th May 2017 @ 04:38

      Totally disagree 🙂 all are very welcome in my eyes.If the police, lorry drivers and coach drivers can get it wrong it’s not just a tourist thing.

      Reply

      • Tracy
        8th June 2017 @ 18:48

        Hi Liz This reminds me of THAT road in St Ives which is vertical from Porthmeor beach. Back in the 70’s when cars weren’t as robust. Remember my family and I watching this car struggling to get up it………… only to roll all the way back down!

        Reply

  2. Penny
    12th May 2017 @ 01:41

    I hope this is tongue in cheek….I have been travelling to Cornwall for years and not everybody who visits your beautiful county drives like an idiot….no sat nav….common sense and maps…please don’t paint us as all the same

    Reply

  3. Jon
    12th May 2017 @ 09:01

    Great blog but I can’t see the pics, your photo gallery has errors when viewing on I pad. Images are half in half out of the box

    Reply

    • liz.hurley@virgin.net
      12th May 2017 @ 10:57

      Will have a look. The photos crashed the site last night, so definitely a problem with the gallery. Mind you 18K people have looked at this post in the past 24 hours so a bit mad 😀

      Reply

      • jon
        12th May 2017 @ 21:56

        its hillarious, im up road in dorset an thought we had the holiday makers bad but at least our roads are wide an not 7 foot hedged. must visit cornwall soon, maybe end of season though when its quiter 🙂 dont want to be part of the problem haha

        Reply

  4. Geraldine Guest
    12th May 2017 @ 09:30

    This is just brilliant and so true of West Dorset too Liz which is where we live. We learnt very fast about reversing, which I find increasingly difficult now I where glasses and aren’t as supple as I used to be, so I’ve handed over the car keys too! We’ve lived in the High Alpujarras mountain range in southern Spain and have had to negotiate precipitous and vertiginous villages and tracks, goat tracks, like narrow drovers roads. Once when moving out of a rental we did get our Honda CRV right down to the bottom of Busquistar pueblo and up around the other side to load up. The entire village were out watching, scratching their chins, no one congratulated us , as helped John do a 30 point turn! Tourism is vital to the South West, so we need to put up or shut up! The A35 here turns into nightmaresville from Easter onwards, with Motorhomes and caravans getting even bigger each year it seems, with so many accidents. The way you write is erudite, humous, insightful and pragmatic. I salute you and the lovely lanes and drovers roads aof all the glorious counties.
    We can’t have the glory (Jurassic coast, Salcombe, Dartmoor, Zenna, St Ives, with its wonderful Tate, Hepworth and the beach ) without the hoards of visitors. There by the grace of god go we. Thank you, I shall follow you now. Geraldine. HIgher Eype. Dorset.

    Reply

  5. Geraldine Guest
    12th May 2017 @ 09:32

    This is just brilliant and so true of West Dorset too Liz which is where we live. We learnt very fast about reversing, which I find increasingly difficult now I where glasses and aren’t as supple as I used to be, so I’ve handed over the car keys too! We’ve lived in the High Alpujarras mountain range in southern Spain and have had to negotiate precipitous and vertiginous villages and tracks, goat tracks, like narrow drovers roads. Once when moving out of a rental we did get our Honda CRV right down to the bottom of Busquistar pueblo and up around the other side to load up. The entire village were out watching, scratching their chins, no one congratulated us , as helped John do a 30 point turn! Tourism is vital to the South West, so we need to put up or shut up! The A35 here turns into nightmaresville from Easter onwards, with Motorhomes and caravans getting even bigger each year it seems, with so many accidents. The way you write is erudite, humous, insightful and pragmatic. I salute you and the lovely lanes and drovers roads aof all the glorious counties.
    We can’t have the glory (Jurassic coast, Salcombe, Dartmoor, Zenna, St Ives, with its wonderful Tate, Hepworth and the beach ) without the hoards of visitors. There by the grace of god go we. Suggestion to anyone, considering the trip, watch “RV” with Robin Williams, one of the funniest films I’ve ever seen. Thank you, I shall follow you now. Geraldine. HIgher Eype. Dorset.

    Reply

  6. Kerry
    12th May 2017 @ 09:48

    Love this Liz! As I delivery driver in Cornwall I’ve seen all sorts of terrible (and comical) driving – from locals and tourists alike! Calm and patience is definitely the only way to deal with Cornish roads.

    Reply

  7. Linda
    12th May 2017 @ 13:19

    Just read the article with keen interest, will be arriving from the US in June. Appreciate the tips! To make the driving more interesting for us we’ll be driving on the opposite side of the road!! Fun times!

    Reply

    • liz.hurley@virgin.net
      13th May 2017 @ 06:01

      You’ll be fine the roads are too narrow to have two sides! Just joking, it really is mostly fine, have a fabulous time, it really is great over here.

      Reply

    • Pete
      13th May 2017 @ 15:51

      Lol… in that part of the world, there isn’t an opposite side of the road! Some of Wales is similar, if you’re heading there. Like the lady says: learn to reverse! 😉

      Reply

  8. Terry Livingstone
    12th May 2017 @ 17:27

    Living in Cornwall we all know how difficult it can be driving around the county on our lanes. The answer is drive a little slower and be patient. Most people give a smile and a wave if you give way and vice versa. July and August is particularly busy I usually visit the quieter places off the beaten track and get back to the beaches before or after this busy period. Welcome the Emmets, live and let live and enjoy life. Monty Python sums it up Always look on the bright side of life.

    Reply

    • liz.hurley@virgin.net
      13th May 2017 @ 06:00

      Couldn’t agree more, we live in such an incredible place, of course everyone wants to visit us. 🙂

      Reply

  9. Mike
    12th May 2017 @ 18:59

    Get a LandRover Defender, preferably about 15 years old with all the front, rear and side protectors. Then see how fast BMWs, Mercedes, etc can go backwards in narrow lanes, especially here on Dartmoor!

    Reply

    • liz.hurley@virgin.net
      13th May 2017 @ 05:58

      My sister used to have a little swb landy, great cars. Held together with rust, rivets and sheer bloody mindedness!

      Reply

  10. Ann Thackrey Berry
    13th May 2017 @ 04:33

    Thanks for the memories this brought back of my cousin and I, Yankees through and through, making our way to our ancestral village of Wendron a few years back. I guess we should be grateful our great-grandfather came from inland and not one of those darling “PortWenn” coastal villages….but Wendron was challenge enough. Getting there and exploring, we encountered plenty of those tiny lanes where flowers nodded at the car roof on both sides–flowers rooted in STONE walls. And lay-bys were almost nonexistent.
    But we loved Cornwall and decided our great-grandfather would never have left for America if there’d been more of a market for his stonemasonry at home…or his mother’d had fewer children.

    We found Wendron church –it dates to Norman times–amazing, and there’s a knight or knightish person lying under the floor there who’s been there 700 years or so and is probably among our relatives. And at the pub near the church, we’d no sooner gotten in line for the bar than we heard American voices ahead of us saying “I DO wish we could have found Joan Pryor!”
    I looked at Janet and she looked at me. We’d been searching parish records et al online for months before our Cornwall trip — trying to find the marriage of our two great-greats, one of whom was named Joan Pryor.
    Trouble seems to be that c. 1790, every other female child in Wendron parish was named Joan Pryor. But we made nice new friends in that bar. And other, wonderful new friends I’d made doing online genealogy drove us all over mid-Cornwall and then brought us back to tea at their stone cottage. We’re still in touch.

    Our only disappointment was searching every plot of that blessed Wendron churchyard for our great-great grandparents’ graves, to no avail….and then, on our last day, over maps in Truro, with no time to go back to Wendron, learning that there was ANOTHER churchyard beyond the wall across the road.
    And now I’m 86 and too old to drive even in Dorset (where I have other ancestry) or Yorkshire (ditto), let alone in Cornwall.

    But I’ve got wonderful memories from all three counties. Great-great-grandparents, rest in peace.

    Reply

    • liz.hurley@virgin.net
      13th May 2017 @ 05:56

      Brilliant story and I love your description of flower heads nodding at the roof of cars. So perfect. I’m glad my article brought back good memories!

      Reply

  11. Chris Wall
    13th May 2017 @ 06:54

    Brilliant! You didn’t mention that a Cornish “hedge” is a type of drystone wall and not very forgiving if hit or the rural roads with grass growing down the centre ….

    And this applies to the majority of villages along the British coastline… park and walk …. trust us: you’ll enjoy it more!

    Reply

  12. John Stedman
    13th May 2017 @ 12:55

    I think it’s the same in any tourist area. I used to have an old VW Type 2 bay window camper – the same as those normally depicted with a clutch of surf boards on the roof. The front bumper resembled a white iron girder – if it got scraped I had a can of paint at the ready. I never had any problems!

    Reply

  13. David Gladwin
    13th May 2017 @ 14:03

    I do not know whether to smirk or just laugh. I must admit I cheat and use the train/bus/size 12 feet when I’m in Cornwall. But my cynical laugh is because I live on the Hereford/Welsh border where the lanes are similar, lots of lovely right angled blind bends but we are infested with Mumsies driving the spare farm truck – a thumping great Nissan, Mitsu or Volvo – to take the children to school. One sweet little thing sits on a cushion to see out of the windscreen and can’t reverse at all. Another attaches blocks to the pedals as her dumpy little legs can’t reach. So you see driving the school bus I’m well trained in idiocy. How is Padstein these days?

    Reply

  14. Porter
    13th May 2017 @ 16:10

    Doubt we would have too much difficulty as we get plenty of practice living on the Norfolk Broads . We don’t have car parks though just a drainage dyke system so if you get out at the wrong place you can get very wet.

    Reply

  15. Obstacles on the road | Neil Cox Hypnotherapy | North Cornwall
    13th May 2017 @ 16:49

    […] Let’s face it life can get pretty much discouraging at times can’t it. Every time it happens we wonder if we will get by the next situation. For a bit of light hearted reading I always love to remind myself about this blog about driving in Cornwall  […]

    Reply

  16. Man of Cornwall
    13th May 2017 @ 20:26

    Please, if you need a 4×4 with double cab, a trailer or caravan and worse still, a roofbox… try to remember that your Chelsea Tractor is not the same as ours.

    If you look around inside the cockpit of your Jumbo sized vehicle, you may find that you’ve got more than you paid for. Amazingly, the likes of BMW Porsche & Lexus have included a free set of indicator’s.

    If you could try to locate these before you hit the Tamar, learn what clever functions these freebies do, you may find that we will only hate with with a passion usually reserved for Ginsters, rather than Dewdneys carrot laden monstrosities.

    We thank you in advance and ask that due to brexit, you get your currency exchange sorted promptly. Your English Pounds are only worth 0.78 Cornish Groats, do don’t even think of buying a second home down here.

    Reply

  17. Nick G
    13th May 2017 @ 22:00

    Liz – planners don’t decide to put mini roundabouts at road junctions – highway engineers do. I’m one confusing us with planners is a pretty bad insult!
    Nick
    PS don’t blame me for the junctions in your neck of the woods – I live and work in Hertfordshire.

    Reply

  18. Ann Dingsdale
    15th May 2017 @ 07:24

    Before WW1 my grandfather was a doctor in Lostwithiel. When he visited his patients in Polperro he would back his car down into the village so that he could get out again. Apparently his car was the first one registered with a Cornish number plate YY1

    Reply

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