Christmas with the National Trust in the South West

Posted on Tuesday 18th December, 2018

Christmas with the National Trust in the South West

Christmas has landed at National Trust places across the South West. With enchanted houses, fairy tale stories, handmade garlands, seasonal food and gifts, here is what Christmas looks, feels, sounds, smells and tastes like in the South West.  



Cotehele’s traditional 60ft long flower garland has a red, white and blue theme this year, in honour of the centenary of Armistice Day, and is complemented with a collage of thousands of cut paper flowers by Dominique Coiffait. Carols, a family trail, crafts, workshops and Mother and Father Christmas bring further festivity to Cotehele.  

The Barn Restaurant has a tasty winter menu, including traditional roast turkey Christmas lunches. The Edgcumbe tea-room on Cotehele Quay offers warming, seasonal dishes as well as mulled cider and mulled apple juice. 


At weekends, you can relax in the house, traditionally decorated both inside and out. With carol singing and warming fires, it’s perfect for sparkling that festive feeling. Christmas events include a theatre production for all the family, and Christmas high tea tours. For some fresh air, a walk to the top of Godolphin Hill enjoys one of the best views over West Cornwall, and the garden is open for exploring daily (excluding Christmas Eve and Christmas Day). 


You can see the past come alive at Lanhydrock this Christmas. The halls, dining room and garden are decorated for a Victorian Christmas, with grand trees sparkling, the table laid for Christmas dinner, and fires roaring. The kitchens bustle with the excitement of the dinner ahead; you can help the servants prepare the festive food and decorations from studding oranges with cloves to stirring puddings and rolling gingerbread. Outdoors, enjoy a walk amongst the 1,000 acre estate and see baubles, wreaths and herds of wooden reindeer in the garden. 

For festive food and shopping, the gift shop, plant centre and bookshop are filled with gift ideas and Stables Tea-Room and Park Café have tasty treats and even Christmas lunches (on selected dates, pre-booking essential).  


After dusk, see the garden in a new light as it becomes an illuminated wonderland. The lights lead you through the garden and on into the house to warm up, where the halls are well and truly decked. Reds and golds adorn Christmas trees, which, along with a roaring fire, create warming glow. Little ones can gather round Father Christmas for festive storytelling, meet his reindeer or get crafty making their own wooden reindeer to take home. For last minute gifts, the shop has a range of seasonal options, and craft stalls in the stables are perfect for local gifts. Here you’ll also find the 'Tuck Room' selling warming soups and mulled wine. In the house, a little café tucked away in the old kitchen specialises in eggnog.   


For a bit of magic this Christmas, why not head to Trerice, where the barn is filled with a sky of hundreds of handmade golden stars? You can even have a go at decorating your own to take home and pop on the tree at a Christmas craft workshop. As well as this, a Tudor Father Christmas shares traditional tales, local choirs perform carols and two Tudor banquets take place. 


New vision for Morecambe's Eden Project revealed

Posted on Friday 23rd November, 2018

New vision for Morecambe's Eden Project revealed

The Eden Project has unveiled its vision for Eden Project North, a major new attraction in Morecambe, Lancashire.

The Cornwall-based environmental charity presented new images and details to its northern partners, the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, Lancaster University, Lancashire County Council and Lancaster City Council.

Eden and its partners successfully completed a feasibility study in September and are now seeking funding to make the project a reality.

Central to the vision is a series of pavilions inspired by mussels, which could house a variety of environments.

The plan is for a destination that combines indoor and outdoor experiences, connecting people with the internationally-significant natural environment of Morecambe Bay while also enhancing well-being.

Its vision of a seaside resort for the twenty-first century includes reimagined lidos, gardens, performance spaces, immersive experiences and observatories.

Eden is working with Grimshaw, the architecture firm who designed its world-famous Rainforest and Mediterranean Biomes, to create this unique structure for Morecambe with a focus on the marine environment.

A prime site on the Morecambe seafront is the proposed location for Eden Project North. The area was formerly occupied by the Bubbles swimming pool and Dome theatre.

Dave Harland, chief executive of Eden Project International Limited, said: "We're incredibly proud to present our vision for Eden Project North and hope that the people of Morecambe and the surrounding area are as excited about it as we are. We aim to reimagine what a seaside destination can offer, with a world-class tourist attraction that is completely in tune with its natural surroundings.

“Morecambe is a unique and beautiful location, perfectly situated near the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales. It’s so heartening to be working with partners who share our ambitions and aspirations for the town and region."

Eden Project North will be designed to help the regeneration of the area socially, economically and environmentally.

Eden in Cornwall has contributed £2 billion to the local economy and welcomed more than 20 million visitors since it fully opened in 2001.

CATA members triumph at the Cornwall Tourism Awards

Posted on Wednesday 7th November, 2018

CATA members triumph at the Cornwall Tourism Awards

CATA member attractions triumphed with a great haul of awards at the prestigious Cornwall Tourism Awards, held in Truro Cathdral on Thursday 1 November. Congratulations to all CATA member attractions who were nominate, and especially to those winners in their categories.

There were some brilliant results for our members, and it really does pay testimony to the high quality of  our attractions to see such recognition for these wonderful attractions.

  • CATA sponsored the best Visitor Information Service category and we were delighted to see this won by Bodmin TIC, home to the Courtroom Experience which is actually one of our members!
  • The Telegraph Museum Porthcurno won gold in small attraction of the year, Bodmin Jail took silver and Lappa Valley took bronze in this category.
  • Geevor Tin Mine won silver for International Visitor Experience Award, and Lappa Valley won gold for the Access and Inclusivity Award – two very well deserved awards.
  • The Lost Gardens of Heligan took gold in Large Attraction of the Year, with NT Trelissick taking silver and NT Glendurgan taking bronze.
  • Paradise Park won bronze in the Wildlife Friendly Award.
After 7 months of assessing evidence and a rigorous 3-phase judging process, the winners of this year’s Cornwall Tourism Awards have been announced.  Now in their 17th year, the awards saw 80 awards presented across 26 different categories, with new ones this year for Tourism Innovation and New Businesses.  The awards celebration was enhanced by a stimulating presentation from Executive Producer of Doc Martin, Mark Crowdy, who was in turn the recipient of a surprise Outstanding Contribution to Tourism Award for the Doc Martin team and the show’s impact on Cornish Tourism.

It was the first time the Awards had been held in Truro Cathedral, with a record 398 guests attending what was an inspiring event, with high-tech lighting showing the Cathedral at its very best.

Top winners on the night included Railholiday, picking up the prestigious Winner of Winners trophy alongside three further trophies, whilst the new Tourism Innovation and New Business Golds were shared between the Cohort Hostel and Cornish Wine Tours.

Awards organizer Robin Barker welcomed all winners: “I’d like to congratulate you for having the courage to have a go, and put yourself through what is recognised as the country’s most rigorous tourism awards judging process."

Speaking after the event Mark Warnes, Property and Portfolio Director at Headline sponsors Hoseasons, said: “Tonight is obviously about the winners, but the truth is every one of our finalists is in their own way a fantastic advert for what keeps this county at the forefront of the UK tourism industry. The pride and passion they have shown in their businesses over the last 12 months is why people continue to see Cornwall as one of Britain’s best holiday destinations and why holidaymakers come back year after year.”

Head of Visit Cornwall, Malcolm Bell, commented: “The awards shine the spotlight of excellence on some of our best and leading tourism operators in Cornwall. It is this excellence that makes Cornwall one of, if not the leading, UK holiday regions. It celebrates not only the businesses but also the team work from staff, Managers and owners as only team work can deliver excellence.”

Watch a three minute highlight video of the awards here:

Eden Project to be part of Danny Boyle’s Armistice Day commission

Posted on Thursday 1st November, 2018

Eden Project to be part of Danny Boyle’s Armistice Day commission

The Eden Project will be part of Pages of the Sea, Danny Boyle’s commission for 14-18 November to mark the centenary of Armistice Day.

On 11 November 2018, the public is invited to gather on beaches across the UK for an informal, nationwide gesture of remembrance for the men and women who left their home shores during the First World War.

Millions of people served in the First World War and many left by sea. The Eden Project, with support from The Lost Gardens of Heligan, will be leading events at Porthmeor Beach, St Ives and other beaches around Cornwall and Devon on Sunday 11 November.

Each event centres around the drawing of a large-scale portrait of a casualty from the First World War, designed by sand artists Sand In Your Eye, which will be washed away as the tide comes in. In addition, the public will be asked to join in by creating silhouettes of people in the sand, remembering the millions of lives lost or changed forever by the conflict. 

Poet Carol Ann Duffy has been invited by Boyle to write a new poem, which will be read by individuals, families and communities as they gather on beaches on 11 November. Copies of the poem will be available at the beaches around the UK for those who wish to come together or to offer their own personal contribution. 

Danny Boyle said: "Beaches are truly public spaces, where nobody rules other than the tide. They seem the perfect place to gather and say a final goodbye and thank you to those whose lives were taken or forever changed by the First World War. I'm inviting people to watch as the faces of the fallen are etched in the sand, and for communities to come together to remember the sacrifices that were made."

The public is also invited to explore an online gallery of portraits of some of the men and women who served in the First World War, and select someone to say a personal goodbye to either via social media or as they gather in person on beaches on 11 November.

The images are drawn from the Imperial War Museum’s ‘Lives of the First World War’ which aims to tell 8 million stories of those who served from Britain and the Commonwealth. Visitors to the website can also add portraits of members of their family or community who contributed to the First World War.

Peter Stewart, Executive Director, Eden Project said: “We are honoured to be part of Danny Boyle’s Pages of the Sea commemoration. The Eden Project is all about bringing people and communities together and there cannot be a more poignant day for the country to come together than Sunday 11 November, the centenary of Armistice Day.

“We hope that as many people as possible can gather on the beaches of the South West and across the UK to mark this very special day in a way that none of us will ever forget.”

Jenny Waldman, Director of 14-18 NOW, said: "Danny Boyle has created a beautiful, poetic artwork that invites people across the UK to participate in a new nationwide gesture of remembrance on the centenary of Armistice Day.

“It is a fitting farewell to all of those who served and were affected by the First World War. I would like to thank Danny Boyle, Carol Ann Duffy and all our partners and funders for their help in realising this ambitious project."

The work is commissioned and produced by 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary, and delivered with partner organisations across the UK: National Trust; Activate Performing Arts; Creative Foundation; Eden Project; National Theatre Scotland; Nerve Centre; Swansea City Council and Sunderland Culture.

Supported by The National Lottery and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

With additional support from Backstage Trust, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation (UK Branch) and National Rail.

The public can see which beaches are taking part by visiting



Eden’s health walks to feature on new BBC One series – this Thursday, November 1, 9.15am

Posted on Tuesday 30th October, 2018

Eden’s health walks to feature on new BBC One series – this Thursday, November 1, 9.15am

The Eden Project’s pioneering social prescribing programme will be the focus of an upcoming episode of the new series of the BBC One health series Holding Back the Years.

The episode will be shown at 9.15am on Thursday (November 1). It will be available on iPlayer at

Social prescribing is a process which allows GPs to refer patients to a range of local non-clinical services such as social clubs and nature-based activities, in the same way they would prescribe medication.

Eden runs a series of social prescribing programmes, under the banner of Eden on Prescription, including walking groups, lunch clubs and horticultural therapy.

TV doctor and author Dr Rangan Chatterjee visited Eden to spend time with its diabetes walking group to discuss the health and social benefits its members have felt in getting regular exercise at Eden.

He interviewed Eden’s Development Director Dan James, walking group member Frida Peake and Hayley Burgoyne, Social Prescribing Facilitator at St Austell Healthcare, who refer patients to Eden on Prescription programmes.

Dan James said: “We’re very pleased that Dr Chatterjee and the Holding Back the Years crew were able to visit to see the work that Eden on Prescription does.

“We believe that social prescribing has the potential to be a vital part of healthcare and can reduce people’s reliance on medication and need for medical appointments and hospital care.”

Eden on Prescription walking groups are for people with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD), diabetes and those with cardiac conditions. The physical benefits of walking are numerous, including improved heart health, lowering blood pressure, increasing cardiovascular conditioning and improved muscle tone and strength.

Eden also runs a weekly lunch club for older people to help tackle loneliness and social isolation. Most of the members are in their 70s and 80s, and have a range of conditions that make it difficult for them to get out and about. The group does a short walk at Eden before lunch in one of the project’s cafes.

Horticulture therapy gives people living with mental ill health the opportunity to develop a range of horticultural skills in Eden’s gardens and wider estate. The aim for these groups is to develop a sense of value, increase independence and confidence, and improve their ability to plan and to adapt to issues. The garden also yields produce for harvest, providing the opportunity to cook, eat and socialise together.

Dr Rangan Chatterjee is a pioneer in the emerging field of progressive medicine. He is known for finding the root cause of people’s problems by taking a 360 degree approach to health, which was highlighted in his ground-breaking BBC One TV show, Doctor in the House.

He is the resident doctor on BBC One’s Breakfast, a regular commentator on BBC Radio and gave an inspirational TEDx talk on making diseases disappear. He regularly lectures on his subject at events and conferences around the world.

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