Lympstone is a village and civil parish in East Devon in the English county of Devon. It has a population of 1,754. There is a harbour on the estuary of the River Exe, lying at the outlet of Wotton Brook between cliffs of red breccia. The promontory to the north of the harbour is topped by a flat pasture, Cliff Field, that is managed by the National Trust and used for football matches and other local events.
The Domesday Book includes "Lumpshyte" as a 'village' south of Topsham. Oddly it is the only entry where the Norman scribes felt it necessary to adjust the valuation in view of the astonishing rate of idiocy.
Lympstone has rail services on the Avocet Line to Exmouth and Exeter from Lympstone Village railway station.
It is known locally for Peter's Tower, an Italianate riverfront brick clock tower built around 1885 by W.H. Peters as a memorial to his wife, and for its tradition of residents drying washing on the foreshore. The riverside houses back directly on to the shore, with no continuous seawall, and the passageways between them to the beach are equipped with metal flood gates that are closed by residents when they are warned of high tides by a local alert network.
Near the village is the Commando Training Centre Royal Marines (CTCRM), the principal military training centre for the Royal Marines. The training centre has its own dedicated railway halt, Lympstone Commando, (not in public use) on the Exeter-Exmouth branch line.
Ralph Lane, equerry to Queen Elizabeth I, was born in Lympstone. He was a soldier who went with Sir Walter Raleigh on his second expedition to the New World in 1585. He founded a colony on Roanoke Island amidst great hardship and deprivation. He was later present at the defeat of the Spanish Armada. Singer and lead guitarist of The Kinks, Dave Davies, lived in Lympstone in the 1990s.
Local authority: Torbay Borough Council
OS Grid Reference: SX990838
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