WALKS DRIVES En­joy­ing an old­fash­ioned thriller in Christie Coun­try

*** & Sun­day SUN­DAY DRIVER Dur­ing a surf­ing break in Newquay, Daniel Pem­brey rel­ishes the el­e­ments in an open Morgan sports car that’s at once retro and thor­oughly modern A GOOD SPOT FOR A WALK: NEWQUAY’S COAST­LINE

The Sunday Telegraph - Sunday - - Country Matters -

You couldn’t imag­ine a more fit­ting cor­ner of the cap­i­tal for a Morgan show­room than Ast­wood Mews in Kens­ing­ton, one of the last work­ing mews in Lon­don. Ap­proach­ing it, the an­tic­i­pa­tion of some­thing tucked away, wait­ing to be dis­cov­ered, builds. The flower boxes and dis­creet sign evoke a lost world, yet the gleam­ing Morgan Road­ster nos­ing on to the cob­bles could not be more spe­cial – only six of them will be made.

It looks fab­u­lous in dove grey with vivid red ac­cents. Based on the clas­sic Morgan Road­ster, it houses the lively 3.7-litre Ford Mus­tang Cy­clone V6 en­gine and yet, with its ash-wood frame, it weighs only 950kg.

With the low seat­ing po­si­tion, view down the long lou­vred bon­net, the mounted head­lamps and sweep­ing wheel arches, it calls to mind the world of an Agatha Christie story. In­deed, Christie was liv­ing just around the cor­ner in a cot­tage in Creswell Place be­tween the wars – the era this car evokes.

In a highly com­pet­i­tive sports car mar­ket, Morgan ne­go­ti­ates its tightrope well. While this model evokes a lost world, it came from a Morgan de­sign team whose av­er­age age is 27.

There is a kit car-like feel to the way the door win­dow pan­els can be re­moved, which be­lies se­ri­ous re­fine- ment. The sparse in­te­rior fea­tures Mul­berry red leather, chrome and a wood-rimmed Mota-lita steer­ing wheel. It has its quirks. The speedome­ter is ban­ished to the left side of the dash – al­most in front of the pas­sen­ger seat. But as I bur­ble out of Lon­don along the M4, the key test of ride qual­ity feels promis­ing.

With the low cen­tre of grav­ity, it sits on the road with a pleas­ing sense of so­lid­ity for such a light ve­hi­cle. The power is read­ily avail­able, yet the de­liv­ery is mea­sured; the six-speed gear­box means that the en­gine never need feel strained. The sus­pen­sion is firm but not un­com­fort­able – cer­tainly not on the M4 or M5, nor in­deed the A-roads ap­proach­ing Newquay. The miles van­ish.

And with a coat on, the win­dow pan­els in the doors re­moved and the top down, there is a real sense of open­ness to the chilly coastal winds and the sound of At­lantic rollers, not to men­tion the at­ten­tions of on­look­ers.

Soon I am ne­go­ti­at­ing the long drive­way to­wards a mon­u­men­tally alone, red-stone and grey-ren­dered build­ing above the sea.

The Head­land Ho­tel could it­self be the set­ting for an Agatha Christie Christ­mas TV drama spe­cial. Opened in 1900, the Head­land was the height of fash­ion and el­e­gance dur­ing the in­ter­war pe­riod. The busy maple wood dance floor was cush­ioned by 2,500 coil springs; or­ches­tras came reg­u­larly from Lon­don to per­form. The ho­tel

This five-mile walk of mod­er­ate dif­fi­culty is suggested by the cu­ra­tors of the South West Coast Path, and starts and fin­ishes at Newquay’s rail­way sta­tion.

From the sta­tion, go out on to Cliff Road, turn­ing left to cross the road and bear right to join the South West Coast Path on the Tram Track. Carry on along Bank Street and turn right on to Fore Street, con­tin­u­ing ahead on to North Quay Hill and the har­bour.

Take the steps on the north side of the quay to fol­low the Coast Path way­mark­ers to the Huer’s Hut.

In the 14th cen­tury the Huer’s Hut was a her­mitage, where a monk kept a light burn­ing to warn ships of the rocks be­low. Some cen­turies later its van­tage point over Newquay Bay made it the per­fect lo­ca­tion for a huer’s hut. Here a look­out was posted to watch for the ar­rival of the mas­sive shoals of pilchards ar­riv­ing in the bay in the late sum­mer. When the huer spot­ted the fish in the bay he would “raise a hue and cry” – the ori­gin of that say­ing – and di­rect­ing the boats to the spot by means of hand sig­nals.

Take the foot­path to the right of the road to carry on around Towan Head to Fis­tral Beach, de­tour­ing to the tip of the head­land for stun­ning coastal views. The path goes through the dunes be­hind Fis­tral Beach. At the far end of the beach con­tinue along the path to the right.

The path con­tin­ues along­side Es­planade Road, pulling out around the cliffs be­low the houses to round Swim­ming Cove and then climb­ing steeply up­hill to re­join Es­planade Road just be­fore it hits River­side Cres­cent.

Turn right here to de­tour along Pen­tire Point East; or turn left and left again to con­tinue the walk along Pen­tire Av­enue. Carry straight on ahead along Pen­tire Road and take the foot­path along the edge of the golf course, just af­ter the bus stop, com­ing out on At­lantic Road. Fol­low At­lantic Road around to the right and cross Tower Road, ahead, to carry on along Cran­tock Street.

At the end of Cran­tock Street turn right on St Ge­orge’s Road and then left on Manor Road. Keep go­ing ahead as it turns into East Street, which will bring you back to Cliff Road. Keep go­ing for­ward to re­turn to your start­ing point at the sta­tion.

How to play Ba­sics: Grid­dlers are solved us­ing num­ber clues to lo­cate solids (filled-in squares) and dots (empty squares) to re­veal a pic­ture.

Each col­umn and row has a se­ries of num­bers next to it. These re­fer to the num­ber of ad­ja­cent squares that should be filled as solids. If more than one num­ber ap­pears, that line will con­tain more than one block of solids.

The solid blocks must ap­pear in the or­der that the num­bers are printed. For ex­am­ple, a row that con­tains the num­bers 11.5 would con­tain, some­where, a block of 11 ad­ja­cent filled-in squares (solids), then a gap of one or more empty squares (with dots in) and then a block of five ad­ja­cent filled-in squares.

Pro­fes­sor Nageswara Rao, vice-chan­cel­lor of Andhra Uni­ver­sity, told an au­di­ence at the In­dian Sci­ence Congress As­so­ci­a­tion that the an­cient de­mon god Ra­vana op­er­ated what? (a) An air force with 24 dif­fer­ent types of air­craft (b) An early ver­sion of Google (c) A dat­ing ser­vice for other gods


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