Explore the Teign Gorge

Couple walking a dog on woodland path

The dramatic landscape and his sense of ancient family ties to the area were what brought Julius Drewe to Devon from Sussex. The acquisition in 1921 of the historic Whiddon Deer Park to the south east of the castle was a significant moment for Julius Drewe. As the clerk of works commented at the time, “it must be nice for you to look across the river into your own property.”

The estate

“…a spot surrounded by scenery of the most magnificent description. The hills on each side rise to an immense height. The Teign confined between these eminences, rushed down at times with great violence.” The route book of Devon, 1855.
Surrounded by a vast granite wall, the park is early, possibly with medieval origins. The deer park is also an important area for nature conservation with its veteran deciduous trees and the extremely rich lichen flora living on them, an indication of the purity of the air.

Roaring river

From the castle the most obvious geographic feature to be seen is the steep gorge which drops into the River Teign. It is typical of the fast-flowing rivers that rise on the bogs of high Dartmoor and rapidly becomes a raging torrent after heavy rainfall. So much energy was ripe for exploration and in 1927, Drewe commissioned Lutyens to build a Turbine House on the river to generate hydro-electricity for the castle.

Gone fishing

Many members of the Drewe family were keen anglers, so Drogo Weir was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens to regulate the supply of water to the Turbine House, while also forming a salmon leap to assist salmon battling their way upstream to spawn. The river is also home to a variety of wildlife, such as dippers, otters and kingfishers.

Walking on the estate

From Castle Drogo there are many winding paths leading down into the gorge. Why not explore estate on a one mile walk, and take in a view of the deep gorge and wider Dartmoor views at Sharp Tor?