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Bayard's Cove, Devon

Bayard's Cove in south Devon is the oldest part of Dartmouth's harbour side. The cobbled quayside here served as an anchorage for the Mayflower during its journey in 1620 to the New World. Mayflower and Speedwell left Southampton on August 5th 1620. Once at sea Speedwell developed a serious leak, forcing the ships to dock at Bayard's Cove. Mayflower and Speedwell were moored here from August 23rd to about August 31st 1620. Bayard's Cove has changed little since that time. The Mayflower is commemorated at Southampton, where it's journey began, and at Plymouth, which provided another refuge for the leaky Speedwell and its less than enthusiastic crew. But both these large ports have greatly changed since 1620. Bayard's Cove, however, would be recognisable to the Mayflower's famous passangers.

A memorial plaque has been erected giving information about the voyage.

Seats on the cobbles make for a lovely place to sit and enjoy the view of the river Dart. There is an artillery fort beside the quay, Bayard's Fort, built in 1534 to defend the harbour against ships which might have got beyond Dartmouth Castle. Bayard's Fort is owned by English Heritage and can be visited at any time without charge.

Directions: Park in the main carpark in Dartmouth, and then just walk alongside the river through the town. You'll walk around the old fort and into the cobbled area of the cove. Click here for an interactive map centred on Bayard's Cove.

Access: Flat pavements lead to the cove.

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©2008InfoBritain (updated 01/11)