Area guide to Topsham
- Credit: Archant
Once a thriving port and shipbuilding centre, Topsham still retains a strong maritime flavour but with a cosmopolitan atmosphere. It has a range of independent shops and straightforward links to Exeter and the surrounding area.
Although officially part of Exeter, Topsham has its own very different character and sense of identity, linked to its position on the beautiful Exe estuary and the unique and quirky architecture of its historic buildings.
Originally a Roman port, and then an important ship-building centre, Topsham is still very much a place for enjoying quality time beside, or on, the water.
Prime-location properties in the town centre and on the waterfront come at a price, while new developments along the Exeter corridor offer more reasonable alternatives
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The heart of Exeter city centre is about four and a half miles away by road, and from the outskirts of Exeter there are good links with the M5 and A38.
Trains run regularly between Exeter and Topsham on the Avocet Line; the journey to Exeter city centre takes about 15 minutes, and, in the other direction, Exmouth is also about a quarter of an hour away.
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Food and Drink
Topsham’s historic High Street and waterfront are packed with a variety of bars and restaurants, including its ever-popular pubs with outdoor tables on the quayside.
For more of a fine dining experience, The Galley specialises in freshly-caught fish and locally-sourced produce, and the Salutation Inn also prides itself on using top-quality local ingredients to create delicious dishes.
Just outside the town centre, The Bridge Inn is a much-loved traditional heritage ‘real ale’ pub, and the nearby Darts Farm has been described as ‘the best farm shop in the UK’, with a fish shed selling fresh-off-the-boat catches, and an excellent deli counter.
Topsham Primary School was described by OFSTED last year as a ‘happy and safe school’ with a ‘lively and exciting’ curriculum.
Exeter has a variety of state and public secondary schools and a high-achieving sixth-form college.
Leisure and Sport
Topsham has its own recreation ground and outdoor swimming pool, as well as a very active sailing club.
Nearby Exmouth, as a popular tourist destination, has plenty of family attractions including World of Country Life, with its tame deer, llamas and farm animals.
Crealy Great Adventure Park, a short drive away, offers fairground rides, adventure activities and a zoo.
Topsham Rugby Club welcomes players, supporters and rugby enthusiasts of all ages and abilities. Based at the Bonfire field the club strives to promote social and community cohesion through a welcoming and inclusive attitude.
The town also has a football club, at Coronation Field, Exeter Road, and a cricket club, which shares its ground with the rugby club.