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Royal Oak, Dunsford, EXETER, EX6 7DA [Map]
The relaxed atmosphere in the pub was immediately apparent the moment we wandered into this pub. Clientele wise, it's a good community local and they didn't seem to mind the dozen or so members of the University of Birmingham Wayfarers Club turning up looking like drowned rats, one cold rainy Saturday evening in November. The friendly atmosphere and the quality of the real ale made it an immediate entry into this guide. It made the perfect end to a rather eventful day. Maybe one day I'll write a little more about it...3 criminals....a crashed police car......a police helicopter......
The Royal Oak is situated in the quiet attractive village of Dunsford at the eastern edge of Dartmoor, just off the B3212 which links the A30 at Exeter with Moretonhampstead up in the moors. We actually stayed a mile or so down the road at the Steps Bridge Youth Hostel buried in the woods high above the B3212 and the very attractive Teign Valley. Anyhow you can stay in the pub, well its actually in the converted stable block where they've a number of smart rooms including a couple of family rooms.
They've a good selection of reasonably priced food available to satisfy most tastes. The country air always makes me very hungry and you'll be pleased to know that they are generous with their portions too.
Oh yes, how can I forget. They like their real ale too and have an excellent selection on offer, a couple of local brews and a couple from further afield - Abbot Ale and Burton Ale while we were there. Sometimes they have barbecues outside though it might be an idea to call them to find out when they're having one. They've a pleasant beer garden out the back and if you're wondering where the gents are, they're out the back too.
One other thing, they've great facilities for kids including games, teddy bears, and good old LEGO! As there weren't any children around we decided that we'd build a city, well, our version of Birmingham, including the Muirhead Tower, known the be the ugliest building at the University of Birmingham. Fortunately I saw little of the exterior of the building as I was lucky enough to work on the top (12th) floor of the building for 7 happy years with commanding views to the hills of Shropshire and Worcestershire. Anyhow, the locals were very impressed with our work commenting that they've never seen a group of adults use the LEGO before! The landlord requested that we send him a photo of our work but seeing as I'm temporarily unemployed at the moment and can't scrape the pennies together to order a copy and buy a stamp I'll just hope that one day he comes across this page! If he does, a little message," Thanks for a great evening, a Great Pub with Great Beer!" Oh yes, and the pub has its own website at http://www.troid.co.uk/.