Day Visits

There’s a very warm welcome here when you come for a day out with family and friends, or with your community group or school/college party; each visit will be different and unique. There are 2 different ways to book – either as a public booking for families and groups, when you pay a £40 fee for each vehicle, with a limit of 3 on site that day; OR as a private group booking, for which you should book via Air BnB. More details and all the links you need are in the Bookings section.

For school visits, please email your initial enquiry so that, jointly, we can evolve your programme and price, to be paid on receipt of invoice.

TIMINGS & REFRESHMENTS

A day visit means a morning of stories and activities, followed usually by a pre-planned walk or drive through the woods. The gates open at 10 a.m. and action starts at 10.30. There are 2 refreshment break times before you walk – mid morning and lunch, when you are welcome to bring your own picnic food or pre-order and pay for simple miners’ food options, to carry in paper bags. Drinks are included in the £5 price of a food bag.

Miner’s pasty – pork, vegs or vegan
Sweet morsels
saffron bun, figgy ‘obbin & hevva cake

At the end of the day we ask that you should return from walking no later than 4.30 p.m. as the site closes to Day Visitors at 5.

ACTIVITIES

The choice of what you do in the morning and the routes for your walk, will be dictated by the ages, interests, fitness/mobility of the people booked in. And to ensure the best possible ‘fit’, there’s an opportunity at the bookings stage to request either a Standard visit (age approx 10+) or a Family one (with special provision for younger children).

TYPICAL PROGRAMME

We’ll begin with a ‘Prologue’ of about 15 minutes, which gives a quick history overview, from the Ice Age up to today! The main topics are Cornwall’s geology and mining history, 4 types of energy system (old and new) and modern green building techniques. This leads into the first activity, called ‘Find a Fortune’ … where we all hunt for buried tin, copper and lithium.

Next you will be allocated a seat from which to watch, as stories unfold about the ‘Green Hero’, Mr. J.T. Austen Treffry – a mine entrepreneur of two hundred years ago. For a Standard group the tales are in 6 ‘Episodes’, but with younger children watching, anything can happen! Usually, the length of watching will be less but running around will be more!

To deliver the tales with minimum Covid risk, we have ‘choreographed’, so that audience ‘bubble’ groups move carefully between one display and another and can remain separate during the interval.

Episodes 4 to 6 move on chronologically to include steam engines, railways, tin mines and quarrying of granite and china stone. And to conclude there is a team challenge, designed to help understand the famous Treffry viaduct, waterways and water wheels of Luxulyan Valley (west) and Fowey Consols mine (east) – some of the most significant areas of the UNESCO World Heritage Site for mining in Cornwall.

Should you have any questions before booking, please check the other Green info sections of the website or simply email cjs@betterways2learn.co.uk

Sincere thanks to the Treffry family, Kresen Kernow centre and the many other sources of information we have consulted. We all share the hope that visitors will remember the name Treffry & his achievements, long after they depart!

The viaduct in 1840s

Our version of viaduct & wheel

1840 tithe map shows the Penpell hamlet & the leat
The 2nd water wheel used in the valley – late 1800s

Wheels for china stone grinding

NB Historic England website gives fuller detail on Treffry buildings and why they have special, listed status.

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