Ashprington and Sharpham Area Guide

Ashprington is a very pretty village approximately  3 miles from Totnes. It is set above the Dart Estuary where Bow Creek joins the Dart. St David’s church which is very much the focal point is set amidst 19th Century cottages, and has a 14th Century tower and Norman front. There is also an excellent pub, The Durant Arms (Miles’ favourite) which can be found at the heart of the village and serves home cooked food and local ales. Teaming up with Tuckenhay they even have their own website

For a small village you won’t find yourself short of things to do when visiting, there are several walking routes from there and the cycle path to Totnes too. In addition depending on the season you can pick your own fruit at Oak Trees Garden or harvest apples for a sumptuous crumble from Ashmeadow Community Orchard (season depending also). The orchard also boasts a large children’s play area. The village of Ashprington is the ultimate invitation to spend a lazy afternoon enjoying life’s simple pleasures.

Down from the village are steep wooded banks, rich with flora and fauna within which you will find Crownley Woods, owned by the National Trust this small area of woodland is perfect for exploring, there is a circular route with a sheltered resting point with a rustic table with benches and an outdoor oven. This is a tranquil spot, perfect for a picnic with views towards Tuckenhay and Bow Creek.

A short walk down a long drive from the village is the Sharpham Estate, which is an internationally renowned mindfulness centre overseen by the Sharpham Trust which have three retreat venues on the Estate, where participants stay and learn mindful meditation techniques amidst the breathtaking natural scenery. In addition the trust operate Sharpham Meadow Natural Burial Ground close by and with wonderful views over the Valley. A great campsite on the river is called Point Field which is basic but magical.

The Grade 1-listed Sharpham House is a Palladian villa high on the banks of the River Dart, at the centre of the Estate, and it hosts retreats all-year-round. Visitors can also stay in Sharpham’s woodland campsite, meditating close to nature, and at the acclaimed Barn Retreat Centre. Sharpham’s retreats have featured in national and international media.

The whole Estate is within the South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and much of it is run using sustainable and organic practices. It is home to rich flora and fauna – including the endangered Cirl Bunting.

Although Sharpham House is only open to the public on certain days, the Estate is also currently home to the award-winning Sharpham Wine & Cheese and the Cellar Door café a seasonal eatery.

You can walk or cycle from Totnes, taking the National Cycle Route 28 towards Ashprington or reach it by boat or kayak which is a glorious way to arrive, especially as it is downstream – though do bear in mind the tides!