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17th - 18th February 2007
Rye Bay Scallop Festival

The 5th Rye Bay Scallop Festival took place between the 17th and 25th of February, so as keen seafood scoffers, we shot down there on the first day to get some scallops inside us. We also wanted to explore the Rye Harbour Nature Reserve which is a regular favourite of ours. Rye is situated where the River Rother meets the sea in East Sussex. There are large scallop beds in the bay and the festival is an annual event to raise awareness for the local catch.
We found a great place to stay for Saturday night (
Oaklands) just outside of the town, and we had a fantastic scallop meal at a restaurant inside a converted triple oast house.

Oaklands B&B. We got the room with the four poster!

From there we shot into town. A quick snack of 9 oysters for me and smoked herring roe for Gill.

Then a good bit of exploring in the town. Oh look, more seafood!

A lot of the towns old walls are still intact, as is this gate built in 1329.

We also climbed the church tower to get a great view of the whole area. I made a small (4.2 mb) movie file of it.

The Playden Oasts Restaurant. We stuffed ourselves on three different scallop dishes.

Then onto the reserve. We managed to see 30 species, but even though we waited at the bittern watchpoint until sunset, we didn't get to see one.

The bittern watchpoint. A very romantic spot to watch the sun set. Serenade is courtesy of all manner of birds and frogs, but sadly for us, not bitterns!