‘Stepping back to the 1950s’ UK island with no phone service but a pub that never closes

Off the coast of north Devon, in the Bristol Channel, an outcrop of granite is getting a lot of attention. With nothing between it and America, this island stuck in time is a history and nature lovers’ paradise.

But first, would-be holidaymakers need to make their ways to the island.

Lundy is only 12 miles off the coast, but it’s not the most accessible of places to reach.

From March to the end of October, visitors can catch the ferry.

Ferry and supply ship MS Oldenburg takes passengers from Ilfracombe and Bideford, with the journey taking less than two hours.

To visit the island at any other times, visitors will have to get a helicopter ride, at a cost of £137 per adult for a period return.

But this is the cost of time travel.


The three miles long and half a mile wide outcrop is known for having kept modernity at bay.

The island general manager, Derek Green, told the BBC: “The beauty of Lundy is that it hasn’t changed for many, many years; it’s like stepping back to the 1950s.

“There are very few vehicles, no pollution, no noise, lots of wildlife. It’s a place that is untouched by the modern world.”

He continued: “My task is to keep Lundy as a world apart, and to try and keep the 21st Century from knocking on our door.”

Lundy has no overnight electricity, no phone service, no cars.

Lundy is famous for its puffin colony. In fact, the name Lundy means Puffin Island in Norse.

Birdwatching is a popular activity on the island, and so is diving, rock-climbing and fishing.

History-lovers will find plenty to discover and explore on Lundy.

The island has been inhabited for 3,000 years, and has been a base for Vikings, pirates, lighthouse keepers.

It’s also been passed from hand to hand in unusual ways: won in a card game, bought in cash…

With the oldest postal service still operating in the world and a 19th century church, Victorian quarry ruins and a castle, Lundy has plenty of history to uncover.


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