20 Things to Remember If You Grew up in Exeter! Did you grow up in the pretty city of Exeter in Devon? Here are 20 things you’ll definitely remember!

Growing up in Exeter

1. Consuming too many cans of Aussie beer and shots of goodness only knows what at the Australian themed bar Walkabout. Since it opened in late 1997, we’ve all been there at one point or another – and who could forget those gloriously sticky floors?

2. Faithfully following the mighty Exeter City Football Club (or the Grecians as they’re more fondly known). After the departure of top players Shaun Taylor, Richard Dryden, Clive Whitehead, Brian McDermott and Steve Neville, the club is still going strong.

3. Walking along the river towards the Double Locks Hotel on a cold wintry day to catch up with good friends over lunch or dinner. The best bits were the pints of bitter and their treacle tart. Yum!

4. Playing hide and seek in the garden behind the city library when you were really little, and then a few years later enjoying a lovely warm summer’s day basking in the sun and chilling with friends among the pretty flowers.

5. Enjoying a walk in the direction of the prison could sometimes be a bit creepy, but if you craved people and noise, you could head towards High Street, Cathedral Yard or Cathedral Close.

6. Being small and getting taken by hand along Fore Street by your parents. Here you were made to visit the vegetable market, small galleries and charity shops when all you wanted to do was go home and play with your mates.

7. Going to a drunken 18th birthday party at Gino’s Restaurant, an Italian place located above the Ironbridge – not that many people will remember those drunken nights out!

8. Enjoying good old fish and chips from Dolphin Fish Bar. The batter was always really tasty and crispy and the chips anything but soggy. You always got huge portions for a small price and the staff were really friendly too.

9. Heading down to the ODEON on Sidwell Street and catching the latest action film or romantic chick flick with some mates.

10. Earning spare cash as a student working in one of the many department stores in the town, such as Debenhams or Marks and Spencer – it was always super busy in the run-up to Christmas or during the sales.

11. The Exeter Phoenix Blitz Fountain memorial being built in memory of the blitz of Exeter (in April and May 1942). The fountain was created using fibreglass, and unveiled on the 50th anniversary in 1992. Unfortunately, it became a target for bottles of detergent, on many occasions causing a mountain of foam to swell up and flow across the pavement.

12. In 1996, Exeter was joining the technological metropolises of the world – the first internet cafe in the South West opened at Exeter Central station. It caused major excitement (and even queues) in the first few months after opening.

13. In August 1994, the pub chain Wetherspoons took over the old Imperial Hotel. While it broke the hearts of many, the £1.5 million spent on the refurbishment meant that Exeter students could drink cheap beer from 1996.

14. Being taken to Tinley’s Tea shop (now Pizza Express) on a Saturday – it was always a treat and had been there forever – it’s hard to believe it’s gone now!

15. The annual procession down the High Street for the Lammas Fair. Every Exeter school child in town got dressed up and involved!

16. Playing cricket (or sneaking in when you shouldn’t have) on Alphington Cricket Pitch.

17. The Exeter builders in the mid-90s creating the spanking new Tesco superstore.

18. It was a sad day when the Exeter Maritime Museum finally ran out of money and closed in 1997. Most of the exhibits from the museum were moved to the World of Boats in Eyemouth. I bet the people of Eyemouth are perplexed at how the people of Exeter allowed the museum to close. There were some striking pieces housed here, however, during the 1990s, the warehouses that housed the museum on the canal side were in desperate need of repair, causing huge financial problems.

19. Hanging out or following the BBC Radio Devon double decker bus that was famous all over Devon and could be seen in Exeter from the 1980s. There was always a crowd of ‘cool kids’ around it!

20. Listening avidly to the ‘Top 40’ on the radio every Sunday, and waiting for your favourite song with your finger paused impatiently over the record button so you could record it on to a cassette. Annoyingly, the DJ always picked that song to chat over the top of!

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