Lanhydrock Cycle Hub & visitor facilities development


We will shortly be submitting a planning application to Cornwall Council to redevelop the Lanhydrock car park, introducing a café and cycle hire outlet along with approximately 10km of cycle trails in neighbouring woodlands. Our proposals will include important improvements to the site’s parking and traffic management and a plan to restore the original 18th century carriage drive toLanhydrock house.

It has long been the ambition of the Trust to improve parking facilities and provide a café facility outside ofLanhydrock’s pay-zone.  If planning consent is approved visitors toLanhydrockwill have essential additional parking (including a new coach park), a café outside of the pay-zone and a cycle hire facility. The play area and plant sales area will be re-located near to these new facilities.

The introduction of the cycling hub at Lanhydrock will provide additional facilities for visitors, give families a more varied day out, and provide a facility that local groups and schools can benefit from throughout the year. The cycle trails are aimed at families and people who are novices to woodland cycling, and will help to encourage more people to enjoy the wider countryside atLanhydrock. The cycle trails will be sympathetic to natural and archaeological features and have been designed to minimise impact on other woodland users.

We have regularly talked to local tenants, the wider community and interested parties during development of the proposals and has held a number of public consultation and information events.  As a result of this consultation aspects of the plans have been amended or refined. Rebecca Brookes-Sullivan, General Manager at Lanhydrockexplains “A key element that developed from the consultation is the proposal to re-instate the original 18th century Georgian carriage drive as the primary access toLanhydrock. This will enhance the sense of arrival for visitors and improve the flow of cars into and leaving the site. We know that during peak periods the current car park does not always provide enough space and can cause congestion to the surrounding local road network. The proposals will help to ease these congestion problems, which we are sure will be welcome news to local people.”

Rebecca Brookes-Sullivan continues “We are confident that our proposals will improve the visitor experience to one of the National Trust’s most popular visitor sites in the country, and provide local people with a year-round recreational facility.” She says “We will enhance and protect the spirit of the place for visitors to the house and gardens, whilst increasing the number and variety of people getting pleasure from the wider estate”.

The development at Lanhydrock is part of the Trust’s ‘Getting Outdoors and Closer to Nature’ programme – enabling the Trust to improve and diversify people’s access and enjoyment of its land through more opportunities for walking, cycling, kayaking, camping and other recreational activities.

Mark Harold, the Trust’s South West Regional Director said “The Trust is committed to improving our range of facilities and improving access atLanhydrock, one of our flagship properties in the South West. This project is an absolute priority for the region; we believe it will offer significant local public benefit and the introduction of off road cycle trails will play a key part in our aim to get visitors outdoors and closer to nature.”

The National Trust will be holding a public open event that anyone is welcome to attend to better understand the proposals.  The planning documents will be available for viewing and members of the project team will be available to answer questions.  The date of this event will be announced shortly.

The Lanhydrock Cycle Hub now has its own Facebook site where you’ll find all the latest information on the proposed project and how to get involved

Lets revive the great British Picnic

It seems we are in danger of losing our sense of adventure when it comes to eating outdoors and are at risk of forgetting a national treasure – the great British picnic.
Some recently conducted research has revealed that although the majority (91 per cent) of parents and their children say they love eating outdoors, over half (58 per cent) are put off eating al fresco food because of unpredictable weather.

While 41 per cent of families decided to picnic in August last year, only 13 per cent ventured outdoors for mealtimes in March – a time of year when people are afforded beautiful spring views, birdsong and glimpses of newborn farm animals.

Apart from the weather, people are put off eating outdoors because of wasps and other insects (62 per cent) and getting dirt and sand in their food (26 per cent).

So we are encouraging a revival of the proud and stoic British tradition of the picnic, whatever the weather, to help people take advantage of the stunning views across its 250,000 hectares of amazing countryside that includes 200 gardens, 100 orchards, 700 miles of coastline and breathtaking hills and mountains.

The top spots for a ‘picnic with a view’ in the south west are at Kynance Cove in Cornwall and Stourhead in Wiltshire.

Layla Astley, Visitor Services Manager in Cornwall said: ‘Its a special place which looks spectacular whatever the weather. When you reach the cliff edge the Cove reveals turquoise water and clean white sand woven between rocky pinnacles to shelter behind on a windy day. During the spring and summer it’s not too affected by bigger swells, which makes it the perfect family beach to enjoy a picnic’.

Fiona Reynolds, Director General at the National Trust said:  “Picnics are something we’re well known for in this country, but we don’t need to wait for the summer sun to arrive.  Spring is finally here and we have our extra hour’s daylight – it’s a great time of year to head outdoors and enjoy food with a view.  Spending more time outside is also the perfect way to refresh and re-energise both body and mind.”

Our poll also reveals that 48 per cent of families regard eating outdoors as a welcome change from meals indoors, with 60 per cent saying it is part of a fun day out and 47 per cent saying it’s a great way of getting fresh air.  However, nearly a quarter (24 per cent) of parents are unclear about where they are allowed to picnic.

“One in four families feels restricted about where they are allowed to eat outdoors and 10 per cent of families haven’t eaten outside in the last year at all.  We want people to join us for a food adventure, to pack up mealtimes and come to eat outdoors at one of our beautiful places,” Fiona continued.

The Trust has also produced a delicious range of seasonal ‘food on the go’ recipes to counter spring chills and make picnic packing lighter and less messy – a welcome relief as nearly a third (31 per cent) of families said they find it difficult to create varied and exciting meals to eat outside because they don’t want to carry too much. Over two thirds of people (68 per cent) rarely or never take hot food to eat outside.

Brian Turner, the National Trust’s National Food Specialist, has created seasonal stews and soups for flasks, and also recommends some simple tips for planning picnics – such as cooking sausages for hotdogs warm by placing them straight from the pan into a warmed wide-mouthed thermos and carving out a cottage loaf of bread and filling with dips to make an on-the go edible bread bowl.

Willie Harcourt Cooze, food writer and chocolate entrepreneur, said:

I love eating outdoors – it’s a simple pleasure that really makes you feel connected to the land you’re walking on. While walking in the hills and mountains fruit is easy to carry, refreshing and delicious – and you don’t even need to worry about waste because it’s bio degradable.

“My top tip for outdoor eating is if you’re making sandwiches, carry the salad ingredients separately and assemble at the moment of feasting, especially when a dressing is involved, as it keeps things crisp. Taking large salad leaves to wrap your whole sandwich in is a great way to keep it in shape and avoid losing any of the best bits.”

To find out more about our top 10 ‘food with a view’ sites, seasonal picnic recipes and what to look out for this spring when you’re eating outdoors, please visit:

Celebrating spring Bristol style

Spring walks at Tyntesfield, nr Bristol, North Somerset

Spring walks at Tyntesfield, nr Bristol, North SomersetAs dappled sunshine peeped out across the South West, we celebrated the arrival of spring (and the weekend) in Bristolian style at Tyntesfield.Time for a squiz at the new Home Farm visitor centre and a carefree walk around Tyntesfield’s sprawling grounds before a spell in the city.

A mighty fine soya cappuccino and gluten-free shortbread (spot the girl with special dietary requirements) from Tyntesfield’s Home Farm set me on my way. It was lovely to see lots of families striding about and breathing in the fresh air. Strolling past the picnickers and kids having a kick about was a splendid way to spend a Saturday afternoon. Have a peek at our pictures.

I glowed with a little vicarious pride as I overheard lots of positive oohs and aahs coming from fellow explorers of this grand Victorian estate.

‘This is a gorgeous, gorgeous place’ – sighed one Bristol resident.
Another remarked ‘Everywhere smells lovely after the grass has been cut.’

I couldn’t have said it better myself. Seas of narcissi and daffodils under the trees, pots of purple hyacinths and freshly sewn seeds in the kitchen garden added to the spring in my step.

And with Tyntesfield‘s turrets and pinnacles standing proud and free from scaffolding for the first time in two years – what a lot of eye candy on show.

The Spring Festival

Continuing Bristol’s seasonal celebrations required a stop at The Spring Festival in the city centre. It was great to see a fellow National Truster – roving recruiter Emma – setting up her stall among local lovers of the outdoors and moreish morsels.

Find her there tomorrow (Sunday 27 March, 11am-5pm) at Brunel’s Old Station (next to Temple Meads). She’ll be joined by the Tyntesfield crew who promise lots of inspiration on getting outdoors and closer to nature just outside one of Britain’s greenest cities.

Why not stop by to find out more about fun things to do in the fresh air from yoga on the lawn to growing your own veg. Simple pleasures, hey?

Your outdoor nation

We’re keen to develop what we can offer in terms of outdoor spaces and experiences, so we’ve launched a 6 month campaign to raise awareness of the outdoors.

We’re well known for our work with houses, but less known for our work with the outdoors. Yet we manage great swathes of countryside and coastline which are available for people to use for walking, cycling, camping and simply enjoying being outside. The majority of our houses have spectacular outdoor spaces and places that are available throughout the year too, yet many people believe everything stops in October when most of our houses close for winter cleaning and restoration.

Outdoor Nation Plym Woods

We’ve extended our opening hours so people can enjoy our gardens, parklands and woods and we’re opening many of our shops, tea rooms and restaurants throughout the winter months. So we’re creating a debate – conversation not consultation – to gather people’s views on what Britain feels about outdoors, whether we are losing touch with the countryside and what we need to do to rekindle that love affair

Please visit to let us know your views or you can let us know what you think here on your South West blog.