Saturday, June 7

We started the day by going to Cotehele House. "Cotehele House is a well preserved, and little altered, Tudor manor house in the east of Cornwall and on the banks of the River Tamar. Cotehele has a series of formal gardens near the house. Plus a richly planted valley garden, with a medieval dovecote and stewpond, a Victorian summerhouse and an 18th century tower with fine views. Cotehele was owned by the Edgcumbe family for nearly six centuries. It is one of the least altered medieval houses in the country, and contains original furniture, armour and a set of remarkable tapestries.

"The present house was built between 1485 and 1539 during the reigns of Richard III, Henry VII and Henry VIII. Sir Richard Edgcumbe, rewarded for his loyalty to Henry Tudor at the Battle of Bosworth (1485), started to completely remodel the original 13th century property. His son Sir Piers Edgcumbe (1472-1539) completed the new house. Cotehele has been comparatively little altered over the years. The family moved to Mount Edgcumbe in the 17th century but they continued to own Cotehele until 1947 when it was accepted by the Treasury in payment of death duty and given to the National Trust. This was the first property in Britain to be acquired by Trust via the 'in lieu of death duty' route."

We had a good tour of the house, although no pictures were allowed inside. The gardens were beautiful and we managed to get a group picture in one of them. Then we had a good lunch in the restaurant on site. After that some, but not the writer, took a long walk downhill to the waterfront area on the river.

After that we were taken out to Bodmin Moor to see some of the bronze age (1500 BC) artifacts there. We stopped at Minions, a tiny village, and walked up to see the ancient stone circle called the Hurlers. There are actually three circles and others in the vicinity. Then we walked on to see a burial barrow which was the site where the famous gold Rillaton cup was found. Beyond that, on a promontory that had been extensifvely quarried, was a stone age fortification. Then we walked back to the village passing many signs of the mining industry. At the village we had an ice cream and watched the sheep moving through town. Fortunately the weather was wonderful, sunny and breezy all day, as it was much of the week.

 


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