Bodmin North Cornwall
On the western edge of the Moor, the ideal base for a holiday in Cornwall. Founded in the 6th Century by two saints, St Guron and St Petroc. The latter founding a Priory, on whose site now stands St Petroc's Church. Visit the Shire Hall, now housing the Tourist Information Centre, once holding the Assize Courts until they were moved to Truro late in the last century. Explore the Court Room Experience. Explore the Museum.
In a superb location overlooking the River Fowey Valley is Lanhydrock House, in the care of the National Trust since the 1930's A good example of High Country House living country in Victorian times. The Long Gallery with its superb plaster ceiling and gatehouse dating from 1641. The gardens a delight to explore at any time of year. In the gardens- rhododendrons, camellias and azaleas a glow of red in spring. The beech avenue a golden hue in Autumn, all framed by a 16th century gatehouse.
The beaches and coast of North Cornwall are only a short drive away. Padstow with its harbour. Beaches such as Daymar and Constantine Bay. Polzeath. Storm lashed Trevose Head. The Eden Project is only 10 miles towards the South Coast, Mevagissey | and Lost Gardens of Heligan | too.Walking |
The Camel Trail Why not take a cycle ride or walk along the Camel Trail, largely level and traffic free those of you really keen as far as Padstow. Left your bike at home, no problem there are lots of places to hire one. Also popular both with tourists and locals alike is Cardinham Woods, with several off ride cycle trails, a picnic area, and adventure plat trail. Not far from Cardinham, on the River Fowey are Golitha Falls a pleasant walk at anytime of year, particularly so in spring when the bluebells are out, and in the autumn. In Season take a steam train ride on the Bodmin and Wenford Railway. At Christmas Santa Specials sometimes run, popular with children and grown up children and grandparents alike. Diesels operate on Saturdays.
In the heart of the Moor is Jamaica Inn. Visit the fascinating Du Maurier Exhibition? Reached by walking down a track is Dozmary Pool, reputed to be bottomless, but in fact shallow, last resting place of Excaliber.
Bodmin Goal Now in part a tourist attraction. When it was built in 1778 a model of its kind using the then latest ideas of prison reform. Up to that time prisoners were housed in barbaric conditions in the Cornwall county gaol within the walls of Launceston Castle. The gaol acted as a civilian prison until 1916, taking its last military prisoner in 1922. soon after the prison was sold and partly demolished, but much of its imposing granite walls remain.
Public Hangings Though the last hanging at the gaol was in 1909 a William Hampton, the last public hanging was in 1862, John Doidge, aged 28. Such hangings were a popular if somewhat gruesome spectacle, attracting crowds of up to 25,000 people from all over Cornwall, many arriving by train. His body like many others before was buried in an unmarked grave within the Prison Walls. Hanging offences ranged from stealing a sheep, to burglary to murder. Those sentenced to hanging included young boys and two women.
The Beacon. Climb the hill to The Beacon- a granite obelisk, built to celebrate the life of one Walter Raleigh Gilbert. A sub lieutenant in the Bengal Army and much decorated for his bravery. Erected in 1856/57 using stone from the nearby De Lank Granite Quarry on Bodmin Moor. Superb views for many miles on a clear day. Surrounding fields managed as hay meadows the whole are part of a Nature Reserve.