We offer a comfortable relaxed atmosphere with en suite facilities, central heating, TV, ample parking space and a patio and garden area for sitting in the Summer. The Eden Project is just 5 mins away and the beach about 3 mins walk. It is an ideal base for walking, cycling or visiting Cornwall’s beautiful gardens and coastline with plenty of local shops and places to eat nearby. We speak both French and German.
The St Austell and Par area (which are part of the Restormel Borough) have a lot of history surrounding them, with in recent times, much of it centred around the China Clay (kaolin) industry. Here is just a small amount of information about the area.
Cornwall is one of the insular ‘P’ Celtic regions, which also includes Wales and Brittany and has a lot in common with them. Until the Romans came to England, much of southern England spoke roughly the same language, the common ancestor to all the insular Celtic languages. With the Roman invasion, and later the Anglo Saxons, Jutes and Danes, the Celts were pushed back into the regions of Wales and Cornwall, with many traversing the Channel to Brittany in north-west France.
Tristan StoneDuring the English Dark Ages, Cornwall and Brittany both shared a common king, and at that period, the two languages were only distinguishable dialectically. Irish priests travelled via Wales and Cornwall on their way to Brittany, converting inhabitants of these areas on the way to Christianity, which has resulted in many common place names.
Remains of this Celtic past can be seen all over Cornwall in the form of megalith standing stones, and the Restormel area is no exception. Between Par (where we are situated) and Fowey, 4 miles away, is the “Tristan Stone”. This is believed to refer to King Mark and his son Tristan of the “Tristan and Isolde” legend, and was immortalised by Wagner in his opera Tristan and Isolde.
With approximately 80% of Cornwall’s border being coastline, it is understandable that the Cornish have a long history with sea. Popular catches include pilchards, mackerel, scallops, crabs and lobsters. These days, with the advent of giant factory trawlers from Scotland and the Eastern Bloc, the fish are disappearing from Cornwall and the small fishermen now use their boats to take tourists on trips around the bay whilst the larger fishing boats have to look for their catches further and further away.
Not only are the ports used for docking fishing boats, but many ports in Cornwall have gigs, which are raced weekly in the Spring and summer. Gigs (or pilot gigs) were used to guide the larger boats into port, and the gig crew that reached the boat first got the job, so the gigs evolved into very fast seagoing rowing boats.
After a decline in the number of sailing boats, the tradition of gig racing was revived in the 1920s, and today it is a popular social event. The local ports of Par, Charlestown, Fowey and Mevagissey all have gig crews, and can be seen practicing in the early evenings of spring and summer.
As mentioned in the Cornish Links page, the area around St Ausell boasts the third largest natural resource of kaolin (China Clay) in the world. The port of Par is used to export clay all around the world, as are the docks in Fowey (pronounced “Foy”, not “Foh-ee”). This ‘white gold’, which is used for porcelin, paper, plastic, rubber and many other uses, used to be transported in the “White River” river in suspension to Par, and then by train, but nowadays trucks are used for the majority of the the land-based transportation.
The history of the kaolin industry in and around St Austell is quite fascinating, and is too great to describe here. If you are interested, the best place to find out about this part of Cornwall’s past and present is Wheal Martin Museum, which is situated about 5 miles from our location, near to the Eden Project.
We are currently offering you the chance to have a free night stay with us. In order to get this offer you have to book 2 nights, and you get 1 night free. To get this offer we are working exclusively with http://www.wowfreestuff.co.uk/. For more information please contact us via the booking page.