Don’t men­tion the Walk . . .

prop­erty port­fo­lio

The Daily Telegraph - Property - - Sand Storms -

War has bro­ken out in Corn­wall — and it’s all Hitler’s fault (again). Hos­til­i­ties be­gan when of­fi­cials at Restormel Bor­ough Coun­cil de­cided that a stretch of path­way run­ning through park­land in Me­gavis­sey, 16 miles from Newquay, should be sign­posted ac­cord­ing to the name it has held among lo­cals since the 1930s — Hitlers Walk. Con­se­quently, signs to that ef­fect were erected. Some res­i­dents pan­icked, fear­ing that this at­tempt to re­tain this his­toric soubri­quet might de­ter hol­i­day­mak­ers from tak­ing sum­mer homes in the area, and coun­cil­lors were ha­rangued for not choos­ing a “more pos­i­tive” name. The signs were promptly whisked away, and the path was to re­vert to its of­fi­cial ti­tle, Cliff Park — only for hardier lo­cals to in­sist that they be re­in­stated, declar­ing that the ob­jec­tions were “ridicu­lous”.

The path was ap­par­ently named af­ter one Wright Har­ris, a despotic coun­cil­lor who do­nated the land to the greater good in the 1930s. Tra­di­tion­al­ists have ar­gued that a name — un­for­tu­nate or not — is still a name, and should not be altered for the sake of po­lit­i­cal cor­rect­ness. More del­i­cate souls, how­ever, are anx­ious that vis­i­tors will hes­i­tate to flock to an area named af­ter his­tory’s most bru­tal fas­cist.

In the latest peace move, the coun­cil is to hold a bal­lot on what Hitlers Walk will be called in fu­ture. Mean­while, Me­gavis­sey clearly re­mains a dan­ger­ous place to live. Other, less con­tro­ver­sial signs warn: “Please do not feed the seag­ulls! They can be vi­cious.” Þ De­spite de­mand for new houses so in­tense that lo­cals would give an arm for a chalet in a con­verted car park, North Corn­wall Dis­trict Coun­cil is no­to­ri­ous for its re­luc­tance to grant plan­ning per­mis­sion. One prop­erty de­vel­oper says launch­ing new de­vel­op­ments in the area is like talk­ing to the brick wall he would pre­fer to be build­ing. The Coun­cil did re­cently grant per­mis­sion for an imag­i­na­tive lo­cal hous­ing project in Tre­beth­er­ick – the re­sult of which is known lo­cally as “ the wig­wams”. Many other pro­pos­als, how­ever, are canned. The coun­cil’s iron will in such mat­ters, the de­vel­oper spec­u­lates, may arise from an episode of Chan­nel 4’ s Con­crete and Cream Tea, screened in 1991. The show ham­mered the plan­ning mandarins for their lax­ity. Since then, things at the coun­cil have been de­cid­edly more strin­gent. Þ Devon­shire fid­dler Seth Lake­man (be­low), pipped to the Mer­cury Mu­sic Prize by An­thony and the John­sons last week, has re­turned from the hul­la­baloo of the cap­i­tal to his hum­ble home in Horrabridg­e. Kitty Jay, his much-lauded album, was recorded on a shoe­string in the kitchen of the fam­ily cot­tage on the edge of Dart­moor, where an en­tire fridge was set aside for such lu­bri­cants of the creative lobes as West Coun­try

cider. Sales of the album, launched

be­fore an au­di­ence of

in­mates at Dart­moor

prison, are sure to re­ceive

a boost, and Lake­man’s eye

may be drawn to some of

the pricey piles of

Devon’s wilds, the

myths of which

in­spired his

lyrics. The prospect of

an up­shift, how­ever,

re­mains dis­tant:

Lake­man spent his last

£177 on the en­try fee for the

prize.

ÞSend your prop­erty sto­ries

— silly and se­ri­ous — to

Prop­erty Port­fo­lio, The Daily

Tele­graph, 1 Canada Square,

Ca­nary Wharf, Lon­don E14

5DT; email: prop­erty. port­fo­lio

@tele­graph.co. uk

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