Arts & Culture

North Devon’s natural beauty has inspired craftsman, writers, painters and more for generations and the region has a rich cultural heritage. You'll find a region full of galleries and markets that promote local arts and crafts, North Devon is full of wonderfully talented artists and is also the home of Verity, Damien Hirst’s sculpture.

Visit Verity

You can’t visit the North of Devon without visiting Verity. This stainless steel and bronze statue was created by the artist Damien Hirst and stands at around 20 meters tall. You can find it just at the entrance of Ilfracombe Harbour and overlooks the Bristol Channel.
Verity was installed in 2012 and is on loan to the town for twenty years, so you have plenty of time to head to Ilfracombe and track her down. You can’t miss her, not only is she located near the pier but Verity is a pregnant woman holding a sword and the scales of justice while standing on a pile of law books, according to Hirst, it represents truth and justice.

That isn’t the only example of modern art you can find in North Devon – in fact, the towns and villages are full of arts and crafts for you to indulge in. It isn’t the only example of art in Ilfracombe either, Echo Beach has become a hub in recent years for artists working with a whole host of materials including ceramics. You’ll find sculptures, photographers and everything in between in this part of the town.

Living Literature

As well as being the host of a number of literature festivals, North Devon has culture of inspiring some of the most famous works of literature in the UK. Tarka the Otter is the first which springs to mind and you can explore the same route by visiting the Tarka Trail in Barnstaple.
The author Charles Kingsley lived in the town of Bideford and published his book Westward Ho! which went on to inspire the name of the village. If you want to indulge in literature, don’t forget to attend Appledore’s book festival, this annual event is a celebration of all things literature and is a must for bibliophiles.

You’ll also find a host of craft fairs in the towns and villages of the region which are held regularly. You can see a full list of what’s on here, but make sure to look out for them when you’re in the region. You’ll find everything from hand made candles and soaps to delicious home grown food and drink as well as art and unique gifts.