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Devon Area Guide

Brixham, Devon. Image courtesy of Flickr user Markles55

Devon gets its name from Dumnonia, the land of the Dumnonii Celts. It was assimilated into the Kingdom of Wessex and eventually became part of the Kingdom of England.

Devon is the only county in England to have to separate coastlines. These lovely shores, along with the bays, hills, rivers and broads, draw thousands of visitors each year. Its south coast is often called the English Riviera.

Its laidback lifestyle draws people with an entrepreneurial spirit. Many of the new industries in the area don't rely on a specific location, so many residents work in the financial or digital sectors. There is a declining, yet still significant, number of fisheries and farms.

Demographics

Devon has around 767,400 residents. Most of the population is concentrated in Exeter and Plymouth, giving the countryside a very low population density. The population is older than the national average, as Devon has a higher proportion of people aged 50 and over than the national average, and fewer people aged between 25 and 39 and children under age 10.

The county does not have a lot of ethnic diversity: 96.6% of the Devon population is white. Of that, only 3.1% describe themselves as something other than 'White British'.

Education

Devon has a largely comprehensive education system made up of rural and village schools. There is a nice selection of schools rated as 'outstanding' by Ofcom. These include Highampton Community Primary School in Beaworthy, Copplestone Primary School in Crediton, Ellen Tinkham School in Exeter and Uffculme School in Uffculme.

There are also two major universities, the University of Exeter and the University of Plymouth.

Transport

Devon is largely connected through bus and train services. The trains provide the most scenic routes, connecting the picturesque villages and towns with the coastline and major cities.

Devon's natural beauty and range of countryside also makes it ideal for cyclists of all abilities. There are many cycle routes that allow people to cycle through the gorgeous parts of the countryside without fearing for their safety.

Amenities and Shopping

The main cities in Devon are Plymouth, the historic port town, Exeter and Torbay, the tourist centre of the county.

Shopping

Arts and crafts fairs and farmers markets can be found in many of the villages. There, you can find the freshest produce, fish, meats and local ciders. There are craft centres in Appledore in North Devon and in Bovey Tracey. Cockington Court is the quintessential artists' village, complete with a canoe maker, glass blower and chocolatier. Dulverton, near Exmoor, and Honiton are both packed with gorgeous antiques. In the summer, north Devon hosts an arts festival called Art Trek.

Mainstream shopping opportunities are found in Drake Circus and the Barbican in Plymouth and Princesshay shopping centre and the Castle and Cathedral Quarter in Exeter. In all these areas, high street brands and department stores mix easily with smaller boutiques and independent shops.

Sport

Devon has three professional football teams: Exeter City, Torquay United and Plymouth Argyle. Rugby Union has a steady following in the area, with both the Exeter Chiefs and Plymouth Albion based in the county. If interest is indicated by the number of teams, though, rugby league is the sport of Devon: there are five teams here. The Plymouth Titans, the Exeter Centurions, the Devon Sharks, the North Devon Raiders and the East Devon Eagles all play in the county.

The Exeter Hockey Club, the National Premier League field hockey club, is also based in Devon. Horse racing, both point to point racing and National Hunt Racing, is popular as well. When it comes to cricket, the county is represented at the Minor counties level by Devon County Cricket Club.

Outdoors

The beauty of Devon is matched by its mild climate, making it ideal for outdoor pursuits. It has two national parks, in Dartmoor and Exmoor. At the Jurassic Coast, people can literally pick fossils up off the ground, and the Braunton Burrows Biosphere Reserve teaches visitors about biodiversity and ecosystems. If all that gets to be too tiring, tourists can rest on any of the many beaches and bays along the long coastlines in the north and south of the county.

Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure the above information is up to date, some inaccuracies may occur. If you notice any inaccuracies please contact editor@primelocation.com

All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.