Sunday, 14 June 2009

It wasn't leafleting, it was training...

Just back from two days on Lundy to recover from the election. It was a fantastic place and just the sort of relaxation I needed after four weeks of electioneering.

For those who don't know, Lundy is about three miles long and half a mile wide. There are steep cliffs on all sides and a plateau on top with a small village and working farm. At both north and south points there are lighthouses. A ship sails to Lundy from either Bideford or Ilfracombe (depending on tides) up to four times a week and there are 23 different places to stay on the Island.

Among the wildlife are plenty of sheep, goats, rabbits by the million, deer and, of course, birds - including the famous puffins. We managed to track down a few puffins on the last day - you can't really claim to have done Lundy properly if you don't see them!

Lundy may only be three miles long, but it is anything but flat - even on the plateau. During our visit I entered the 2009 Lundy Marathon - not 26.2 miles but a race from the village down to the southern light, back up Island all the way to the northern light and back to the starting point again. The course is just over 6 miles long and includes two serious sets of steps (over 150 in each) which have to be climbed down and up, as well as a seemingly never ending hill from the landing stage to the village itself.

I managed to be the second person across the finishing line. This wasn't quite as heroic as it seems as the walkers have a head start over the runners of up to an hour. The quickest runner finished in 53 minutes. I walked and finished in exactly double that. Even so, I think I did quite well and put it all down to the training I had delivering up and down the hills and steps of Launceston Central.

If you ever want a very relaxing short break, I thoroughly recommend Lundy.

(The photo below is taken from the level of the village. The landing dock is on the left and the southern light on the right. Part of the marathon course takes you down to the landing dock and up 150 steps to the lighthouse and then back over the same route)

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