Back in 2004 I noted: Totnes has decided not to mark next year's 200th anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar - because it might offend the French.
Totnes councillors feared commemorating Nelson's victory over the French and Spanish could upset their twin town in France.
I was unimpressed by the scabby shabby little resort then but now I read: Totnes in Devon might be the most forward-thinking eco settlement in the world. As fossil-fuel reserves dwindle and the economy contracts, will resident-led Transition Towns become the way that we all live?
There are more new age "characters" than you can shake a rain stick at, more alternative-therapy practitioners per square inch than anywhere else in the UK and the town was once named "capital of new age chic" by Time magazine.
A local currency is central to the Transition plan. "Think of a leaky bucket," explains Brangwyn. "Any time we spend money with a business that's got more links outside the community than in it, we leak money from the local economy. What local currency does is allow that wealth to bounce around in that bucket.
The great plan in Totnes included the planting of 186 hybrid nut trees around town. You can just walk around and help yourself to free nuts, which can only help community cohesion.
Is it something in the water down there?