Trebah Gardens with C+M
Skipper and First Mate Millard (Big Bear and Pepe)
Mon 23 Jul 2018 23:47
Trebah Gardens with Cecily and Martin
The morning began with a difference. Just down the road Cec presented a few of mum’s bits to a local auctioneer for perusal. Whilst that was going on I took in the jigsaw puzzle box lid picture of the pub opposite. Coffee enjoyed, we headed to Trebah Gardens where I was given permission to do a blog on the garden history.
The scene from the car park – so very English.
Family pose by a water feature.
The taller of the two trachycarpus in the valley is the tallest of its kind in the UK, standing at 14.7 metres.
Brother and sister take to the stage.
A great favourite of mine, the monkey puzzle tree (Araucaria araucana).
Blossom on the way to the massive gunnera.
Posing ‘neath the leaves.
The lake, like a Monet.
Purple and pink hydrangea.
Time for an ice cream and lovebirds bimble on the beach.
Polgwidden Cove in the 1960s.
Workmen removing concrete in the early 1960s.
Polgwidden Cove (centre) on the 1888 Ordnance Survey Map.
A brief history of the Helford River and Polgwidden Cove: The Helford River is a relic of an an older and wilder Cornwall and is one of the very few places in England where ancient woodland meets the sea. It is listed as an area of outstanding natural beauty.
The name Helford derives from the Cornish word Heyl, meaning estuary. Polgwidden Cove is made up of Pol, meaning pool, pond or lake and Gwidden, meaning white, possibly because of the light sand and rocks.
The area was first settled by the Celts in the 3rd and 2nd centuries BC who were streaming for tin, fishing, farming and collecting oysters. Romans and Phoenicians used to navigate up the river to Gweek and the oak woodlands bordering the river were recorded in the Doomsday Book.
During the 19th century the river was a centre for industry with Gweek distributing tin to places all over the globe. Employment was scarce, with smuggling and piracy rife in the river’s many hidden creeks, including Frenchman’s Creek made famous by Daphne du Maurier,
The original boathouse, photographed from the beach circa 1914.
When the garden was developed around 1850 a boathouse was constructed on the west side of the beach; this was dynamited during D-Day preparations to allow access for the tanks.
The original boathouse, looking up the garden circa 1914.
During WWII Polgwidden Cove was selected as a D-Day embarkation point as its location meant crossing the Falmouth Bay was not a necessity. A sturdy metal road was constructed from Bar Road, near Helford Passage, down to the cove. The beach was overlaid with concrete, and jetties were constructed to allow ten 150 foot flat-bottomed landing craft to moor.
On the 1st of June 1944, 7500 American troops from the 29th US Infantry Division embarked for Operation Overlord, the biggest amphibious landing in history. These events left Polgwidden Cove with the local nickname ‘Yankee Beach’.
Army activity on the beach in 1944.
US military ships preparing to leave for Normandy.
During the 1960s Trebah became the home of racing driver and designer of Healey cars, Donald Healey. He obtained a grant from the government to remove the wartime infrastructure and concrete. He used the granite found below the concrete (most probably from the old boathouse) to build the existing boathouse. The information board hangs in the boathouse and is a wonderful read whilst waiting in the ice cream queue.
A yacht and the ferry in the Helford Passage.
Time to head back by the lake.
A gunnera water feature and a bee enjoying what bees do.
A pretty display in the shop.
ALL IN ALL A BEAUTIFUL GARDEN WITH A RICH HISTORY
A GREAT DAY OUT