We all know Budleigh Salterton is a charming place to spend some time, and while some of us love visiting as part of our holidays to Devon, others are lucky enough to actually live there and enjoy the sights and sounds every day. 

Here are some of the notable residents that have had the joy of living and breathing Budleigh Salterton. How many of these names did you know was associated with the region? 

Sir Walter Raleigh | Privateer

Walter Raleigh is best known for his association with Britain’s foray into sea voyages, the Spanish Armada and for being a favourite of Queen Elizabeth I. He was born in East Budleigh, on a farm that is now known as Hayes Barton. The region from the Exe Estuary through to Sidmouth is known as Raleigh Country because of the family’s involvement in the local community and of course, Walter’s fame. 

Reg Varney | Actor/Comedian

For those of us of a certain age, Reg Varney will be instantly recognisable from his role in On the Buses. His career also included appearances in the Rag Trade and The Great St Trinian’s Train Robbery, among other hits. While he wasn’t born in East Devon, he lived out his retirement in Budleigh Salterton, moving there in the 1990s until his death. 

Dame Hilary Mantel | Writer

Dame Hilary did what we all wish we could have done – after a visit to Budleigh beach, she moved to the town and immediately began supporting the annual Literary Festival. 

Belinda Lee | Actor

It’s a name you might not necessarily know, but fans of classic films will definitely recognise her face. She was described as being one of the most notorious, yet paradoxically anonymous British actresses of the 1950s by the British Film Institute. Unlike some of the others on this list, she was born in Budleigh Salterton, her father being the owner of the former Rosemullion Hotel. She was educated locally before going on to study at RADA and finding fame. 

Charles Warrell | Writer

Charles Warrell worked as a school teacher and created the I-Spy books, a series of spotters guides for children that began being published in the late 1940s. He continued writing well into his 90s and lived in Budleigh Salterton during his retirement, where he reached the grand old age of 106. 

Thomas Adolphus Trollope | Writer

Another writer who felt the call of the sea and retired to Budleigh was Thomas Adolphus Trollope. He lived in Italy for most of his life but retired to Budleigh Salterton. You can find a plaque dedicated to him on his former home. 

Sir Richard Rodney Bennett | Composer

Born in Kent to a musical mother and a writer father, the family moved to Budleigh Salterton at the outbreak of the Second World War. He was an accomplished musician in his own right and composed a huge amount of influential music. He was awarded a CBE in 1977 and knighted in 1998. 

Andrew Marr | Broadcaster

Known for his work with the BBC, Andrew Marr is Scottish broadcaster and in recent years became a resident of Budleigh Salterton. 

Henry John Carter | Geologist

Carter was born in Budleigh Salterton who is acknowledged for his work in the fields of paleontology, zoology and geology, as well as working as a surgeon in India. After working in India, he returned to his birth place, where he spent the rest of his life. 

John Everett Millais | Artist

You can find a blue plaque dedicated to Millais in Budleigh Salterton to mark where he stayed while creating his painting The Boyhood of Raleigh, which depicts Walter Raleigh and his beother sat on the beach in Devon. The piece forms part of the collection of the Tate Galley. 

Planning to come to Budleigh for a break or to suss out your future home? Take a look at the below! 

Things to do in Budleigh Salterton this half term

  • 3 minute read

Spending time in Budleigh Salterton this half term? Here are our suggestions of fun things to do that won’t cost the earth and will give you a chance to explore this charming seaside town. Visit the beach Budleigh beach is huge! Plus, it is mostly pebbles, so no need to worry about getting sand in…

Learn More

5 things you might not know about Budleigh Salterton

  • 2 minute read

If you’re thinking of visiting East Devon this spring, Budleigh Salterton, with its beach, charming town centre and nature reserve is a great place to set up base. Want to know more, here are some things you might not have known about Budleigh Salterton. Budleigh Salterton wasn’t always known by…

Learn More

Bibliophiles – head to Budleigh!

  • 2 minute read

Literature lovers should head to Budleigh Salterton for a taster of their famous Literary Festival with Spring Weekend taking place on 1 st and 2 nd March. This year’s Spring Weekend features the likes of Marcus du Sautoy, Simon Armitage, Hannah Barnes, Sam Peters, Sir Robin Niblett and Clive Myrie…

Learn More

What’s on this half term in East Devon

  • 3 minute read

Visiting the East Devon area this half term? Or spending time specifically in Budleigh Salterton? Here are some suggestions to keep you entertained this February half term. Days out at the beach Well first up, Budleigh Salterton Beach is a must visit for beach days. It might be a bit cold in…

Learn More

Famous faces from Budleigh Salterton

  • 3 minute read

We all know Budleigh Salterton is a charming place to spend some time, and while some of us love visiting as part of our holidays to Devon, others are lucky enough to actually live there and enjoy the sights and sounds every day. Here are some of the notable residents that have had the joy of…

Learn More

New Milestone Reached in Lower Otter Restoration Project

  • 3 minute read

Another significant milestone has been reached in The Lower Otter Restoration Project. On Friday 24th November, the brand new 70 metre ‘Elizabeth Bridge’ was officially opened by on. Charles Fane Trefusis of Clinton Devon Estates and Mark Rice, Environment Agency Area Director. As part of the…

Learn More