The Friends of Luxulyan Valley


The Friends of Luxulyan Valley

The ‘Friends of Luxulyan Valley‘ are a group concerned with the conservation of Luxulyan Valley. Established in 1997 the group has links with Cornwall Council and the Footpath Committees of Luxulyan and Lanlivery parishes.

They are also members of the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers and would welcome anyone interested in supporting their objectives:

  • Promote preservation and protection of the Luxulyan Valley.
  • Influence and assist in the management of the Luxulyan Valley.
  • Assist with and promote education and the history, natural history and other aspects of the Luxulyan Valley for all interested parties.

The group have many organised activities throughout the year including; indoor talks in Luxulyan, working parties, china clay and local area history talks and field trips in Cornwall. More details can be found on the events sections of their Facebook page.

St Austell Baptist Church


St Austell Baptist Church

St Austell Baptist Church is in the heart of St Austell town centre on West Hill.

They have an amazing list of regular and one off activities for the whole community to join in with. From summer clubs to bible studies to Dads and Kids clubs. Visit their whats on page for full details.

Address: West Hill, St Austell, Cornwall, PL25 5ET
Phone: 01726 67679

SatNav Coordinates: 50.3380808, -4.7958011

Lostwithiel Community Cinema


Lostwithiel Community Cinema

Did you know that Lostwithiel has a community cinema? Lost In Film can be found in the Church Rooms in Church Lane. They screen the best of the latest cinema releases with a programme of roughly 20 films per year. Visit their website for more information and to book tickets

Films are generally shown on the second and last Monday of every month between September and June with the occasional screening in between those times, so keep a look out on their website for more details.

They even have a bar!

Wheal Martyn China Clay Museum


Wheal Martyn China Clay Museum

Wheal Martyn in St Austell is Cornwall’s only China Clay mining museum, in fact it is the UK’s only china clay mining museum. The museum tells the story of the mining industry, which is still alive today. 

Set in 26 acres of grounds, Wheal Martyn incorporates a preserved Victorian clay works and gives insight into this important industry which shaped the lives, landscape and economy of the Clay Country which surrounds St Austell and beyond.

The museum provides opportunities for everyone to learn, be inspired and engage. During your visit you can interact with their vast collection of artefacts, archives, built heritage and environment within their unique and special grounds.

Wheal Martyn is located in the village of Carthew, between St. Austell and Bugle on the B3274, 2 miles north of St. Austell and 6 miles from the Innis Downs junction on the A30 dual carriageway. Open daily from 10am to 5pm,Click here to visit their website for full details.

Hidden Valley Gardens


Hidden Valley Gardens

At Hidden Valley Gardens you will find a beautiful 3 acre award-winning cottage style garden complete with a specialist plant nursery, all hidden within a secluded valley near St Austell at Treesmill in Cornwall.

This wonderful tranquil place provides the opportunity to sit amongst the borders and beds set with herbaceous perennials, shrubs, grasses and a fine collection of Crocosmia, Agapanthus and Dahlias.

The Garden has many themes including a Mediterranean area, colourful herbaceous and cottage garden beds and a ‘hot’ border. There is a pond area with wildlife and bog planting and a shady Fernery. A Japanese area and an iris garden, plus potager, fairy well and a fruit area.

Feel free to make your own refreshments in the Tea Hut or sample the delicious homemade cakes. Plants are available to buy at the plant nursery.

Well behaved dogs on leads are very welcome.

The Hidden Gardens are open from March to October (except Tues and Weds) from 10 to 6. Entry price includes tea/coffee. Children are FREE (and include a Garden Quiz). For full details visit their website

Directions: From A390 between St Austell and Lostwithiel, turn onto the B3269 towards Fowey, then right after 200 yards following the signs for 2 miles.

Top 10 Family Days Out


Top 10 Family Days Out

Check out our guide below for 10 great things to do as a family.

1. Go Crabbing In Fowey

A fun activity for both young and old, Fowey is renowned for its great crabbing spots. For the best, head to Albert Quay Steps, the slipway on Passage Street or the riverfront at Caffa Mill.

There’s no need for a hook, simply tie on some bacon rind, drop your line into the water and wait! It shouldn’t take too long for the crabs – most commonly The Shore Crab – to take the bait.

If you want to keep your catch in a bucket for little while to look at, make sure you only put a few in at a time and place them in the shade – they don’t like bright sunlight.

Once you’re finished your crabbing session, remember to carefully put the crabs back into the water.

2. Step Back In Time And Let Imaginations Run Wild At Restormel Castle

Standing proudly one mile north of Lostwithiel, why not pay a visit to Restormel Castle. Let children’s imaginations run wild as they explore the ancient castle and its beautiful grounds.

Dating back to the 11th Century, the castle was built by the Normans, making it one of the oldest motte-and-bailey castles in the West Country. Its 13th Century circular shell-keep has done a brilliant job of enclosing the principal rooms in good condition.

Once there, make sure you read all about the Castle’s fascinating life and really bring history alive! As well as learning about who lived there and the military action it saw, be sure to keep an eye out for some spectacular wildlife and birds – the grounds are a well known haven for it.

Entry is free if you’re an English Heritage member and it’s open from April 1st through to October 31st. There is parking and toilet facilities, as well as plenty of places to enjoy a picnic.

3. Hunt Down The Heligan Sculptures

Visit the Lost Gardens of Heligan and challenge your children to find the attraction’s famous sculptures. Set within some 60 acres of traditionally managed woodland, The Giant’s Head, Mud Maid and Grey Lady are just waiting to be discovered. Pick up the garden’s Woodland Walk and see who can find them first! For younger children why not make them an ‘I-spy’ print out with pictures of the sculptures to help them hunt them down.

There are plenty more things to explore, discover and enjoy whilst you’re at Heligan. For more information on the attraction, click here.

The attraction is open all year round, except Christmas Day and there are parking, toilet and café facilities available. Entry prices apply.

4. Take On The ‘Children’s Challenge’ In Lostwithiel

A free activity that helps you discover snippets of the town’s history and what is has to offer to locals and visitors today.

The challenge will take you on a trail of discovery to the town’s museum, the town bridge, war memorial and railway station, among many others.

If it’s nice weather, why not pack a picnic and pick a spot to refuel along the river, or choose to enjoy lunch in one of the many town’s eateries.

You can find a downloadable PDF of the Children’s Challenge here – don’t forget to take a pen and paper!

5. Build Sandcastles At Caerhays Beach

When the sun makes an appearance, why not head down to Caerhays Beach – also known as Porthluney – and get sandcastle building.

With its large expanse of golden sand, you’ll have plenty of room to get creative with your castles.

There’s a large, chargeable car park very close to the beach and dogs are required to be kept on a lead. There’s also a popular café and beach side shop nearby offering tasty refreshments.

If your sandcastle game is strong, but you fancy a different beach, check out our beach guide, click here.

6. Delve Into The Mystery Of Roche Rock

Get your walking shoes on and head to Roche to discover the mysterious Chapel at Roche Rock.

Arguably the village’s most well-known feature, the chapel was dedicated to St Michael in 1409. It has two storeys – a chapel above and a room below. It has been a ruin for at least 250 years but no one truly knows who lived there and why, so it’s a great chance for children to use their imaginations and come up with a thrilling story.

You can walk around the rock and up to the castle. Once there, there’s a ladder to the room and then a second ladder to the higher level. This is done at your own risk – make sure you take care when exploring. Due to this rocky ground underfoot, this won’t be suitable for prams of wheelchairs.

On-street parking is available throughout the village and there is an information board at the beginning of the path, with plenty of information about the area as well as various myths about why the structure was built!

7. Get Adventurous And Try Something New At Porthpean Outdoor Education Centre

Well known locally for hosting school camps – Porthpean Outdoor Centre also offers jam-packed multi activity days on weekends and throughout school holidays for families and group bookings.

From £35pp, you can choose from climbing, archery, high ropes, mountain biking, problem solving, bushcraft, kayaking, canoeing, sailing and coasteering – plenty to keep your family entertained!

For more information visit their website here.

8. Get Out On The Water

We’re lucky enough to have some of the country’s most beautiful coastline, so make incredible memories and see St Austell like never before.

There are dozens of companies across the wider Bay area that hire out equipment to get you out at sea. From self-drive boats and guided trips to kayak, banana boat, canoe and stand-up paddle board hire – there is something for everyone to enjoy together as a family.

Businesses offering such hire can be found right across the Bay, from Fowey and Golant, to Polkerris and St Austell.

9. Get Hands On At Wheal Martyn

Capture your children’s imaginations and help them discover the area’s heritage with a visit to Wheal Martyn.

As well as giant waterwheels, vintage trucks, a train and adventure play area, there are tons of hands on exhibits at this attraction.

The indoor interactive centre features a making and drawing area, dressing up and voice recordings and film footage that give you your very own virtual tour into a working pit. Meanwhile outdoors, there’s a trail that takes you around a Victorian clay works, crib hut and flat-rod tunnel.

There are also quizzes to do along the way, as well as a Wheal Martyn teddy bear hunt and the chance for youngsters to wear a hard hat during their visit.

Wheal Martyn is £9.75 per adult and £5 for children, Under 5s go free. Family tickets are available. The best part is if you buy a full price ticket, you then get in free for a whole year.

There is parking on site, as well as a café and gift shop. For more information visit their website here.

10. Spy Mission Treasure Trail

Why not transform your family into a team of spies and take on the Spy Mission Treasure Trail!

Available to either purchase for £6.99 and download online, or have it posted to you, this trail starts at Holy Trinity Church in the town centre, follows the bed of an old branch railway line, passes through Trenance Valley viaduct, the Carlyon Farm China Clay dry, finishing at the Wheal Martyn Museum.

You’ll need to work together to solve clues as you make your way along the specified trail route. Once you’ve got all the clues you can then crack the code and complete the mission!

The route includes both walking and cycling and should take around one-and-a-half hours to complete. Click here for more details

The Eden Project


The Eden Project

The Eden Project is a popular visitor attraction in Cornwall, England, UK. Inside the two biomes are plants that are collected from many diverse climates and environments. The project is located in a reclaimed china clay pit, located 2 km from the town of St Blazey and 5 km from the larger town of St Austell.

The Eden project have a full programme of events and community activities throughout the year. Please click here to visit their Facebook page for full details or go to their website click here.

Luxulyan Valley


Luxulyan Valley

The whole valley area played an important part in the production of granite and industrial minerals during the 19th Century. Thanks to Joseph Treffry’s innovation in the area, the valley was transformed into a hive of industrial activity, with workers quarrying granite, mining copper and tin, as well as producing China Clay and stone.

Once you park up and cross the road towards the start of the path, you’ll come across an information board and map fixed onto a granite stone. You’ll see the possibilities to explore the valley are endless and there are a host of routes to choose from.

Exploring the other side of Luxulyan Valley is easy thanks to a free car park at Pontsmill.

Whether you choose to take a circular route into the east of the Valley, follow the straight path through the center, or decide to walk all the way to the Treffry Viaduct, there’s plenty to see along the way, from nature and wildlife to fascinating historical remains.

If you choose to follow the most central path through the Valley, you’ll come across the remains of the Trevanney China Clay Kiln. This was in operation between the 1920s and 1960s and processed China Clay piped in from outside the Valley.

Don’t worry if you take a different route, there’s plenty to see, making it an ideal walk and afternoon out for the whole family – especially the dog! From the 19th Century Wheel Pit and The Incline constructed c1840.

Horse riding and cycling is permitted on the designated horse trail only. Walkers can use all paths and tracks, but please note some may be steep and uneven.

There are a number of resting points along the way and dog waste bin can be found at the start of the walk.

For more details visit the Friends of Luxulyan Valley website.

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