Woman at beach 'before breakfast' to reserve spot

Image caption "It's worth coming down at that time of the morning," Cathy Cronin said

A woman trying to beat the crowds on a popular Devon beach said she got there by 06:30 BST to ensure her family had a good spot.

Cathy Cronin, from Ivybridge, made sure she got to Bigbury beach early on a day when tens of thousands of people were expected to flock to the seaside.

She said: "I staked my claim and then went up to the campsite and cooked breakfast where we were staying.

"I love an empty beach and later on it's like this so it's purely selfish."

The beach in the South Hams region is always popular with a decent surf break and views out to Burgh Island.

Ms Cronin added: "I did feel a bit like 'towels on sun-loungers' but it did the job and we have a lovely little spot as it gets crowded when the tide comes in."

Image caption The beach at Bigbury looked especially busy on Friday because the tide was in

Traffic was busy on the approach to the beach - especially at points where the road narrows to a single lane.

Cathy Case, at the overflow car park, said: "It was really grim in the road here yesterday.

"It was taking two hours to get here from the main road and people were exasperated and at the end of their tether, so it's really nice to give them somewhere to go because all they want to do is get down to the beach."

Image caption The beach in Perranport was very busy, despite the weather clouding over

At Crantock and Perranporth in Cornwall people were enjoying the beaches despite the weather clouding over in the afternoon.

A car park attendant at Crantock said it was busier this year.

He said: "Two years ago we would tell people to be here by 10:00 to get a space, last year we said 09:30. Yesterday and today the car park was full by 08:45."

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