Holiday: Devon and Cornwall – Day 13/15:

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Morning all! ?. We’re on our way to the final leg of our holiday, staying at the Mill End Hotel in Chagford, Dartmoor.

My arms are tired, can we use the car next time?

Check-in time is 3pm, so as usual, we’re going to make the best use of time and visit a couple of attractions beforehand – National Trust’s East Pool Mine near Redruth and National Trust’s Lanhydrock House. To round off the day, we’re meeting up with good friends, Rich & Nicki and their friends, John & Gaynor in the evening at The George in Hatherleigh for a meal.

8.47am: So, it’s bye-bye to The Piggery. We’ve enjoyed staying there, our first AirBnB ever! ?

East Pool Mine (National Trust)

The EPAL’ on the chimney stands for East Pool Ager Limited

East Pool is one of the few 18th-century mines that stayed working into living memory. The major shareholders in the mine – the Ager-Robartes – lived at Landhyrock. Its history is not only in the past but lives on in the visitors and local volunteers who remember playing around the buildings or hearing the machinery working.

9.22am: We arrived in good time. The National Trust shares its parking with the local Morrisons, so we grabbed a coffee and pastry from Mr M and waited to be let in.

10.20am: We had pre-booked a tour of East Pool Mine (currently, you can’t just ‘turn up’) and it was well supported – our group numbered eight in total. Our Guide was Treve, a local who could trace his family from this area back almost 200 years. He was a proud Cornishman who had been a Mechanical Engineer by profession, lectured in Engineering and now used his local knowledge and his engineering specialism to entertain and educate people like us. We knew we were in good hands!

After a thorough explanation of most of what was on display, we were then shown a short film about the history of the Mine and the surrounding area…

Production here stopped when the subsidies were withdrawn after the end of WW2.

We then headed outside, and actually walked under the tall chimney we’d seen on arrival.

Outside was just as impressive and Treve gave us ‘chapter and verse’ of the buildings and their significance in the process of tin mining.

The Engine House

Probably most interesting of all was Taylor’s Pumping Engine House

…that had on display some very impressive pumping machinery that, in its day, was world-leading and highly sought-after.

“Ground Floor please…”

We finished with a look at the actual lift mechanism that was used to transport 16 (yes, 16) Miners at a time down to their workplace.

11.57am: That was very impressive. The hour tour took nearer to 75 minutes, and we learned a lot. Definitely worth a visit!! ?

Lanhydrock House (National Trust)

That’ll do nicely!

1.01pm: Lanhydrock House is probably the ‘jewel’ in NT’s ‘crown’. A paragon of Victorian style and design, it has everything you might expect from a National Trust asset.

Yet it only appears as it does because it was extensively rebuilt and completely redecorated in the 1880s following a serious fire that destroyed parts of the building and ended the lives of its occupants shortly after.

1.15pm: A brisk walk is needed to get to the House. The whole site certainly seems to have grown since we were last here back in the 80s.

The sheer size and scale of the place means you could easily make a day of it here – we had about an hour! ?

Even the Gatehouse looked impressive!

First stop was the House itself. Bizarrely, you are given a password upon entry that needs declaring when entering certain areas.

The famous Jacobean ceiling that survived the fire

Next stop, the Kitchens. And being Lanhydrock, it would only be right to have more than one…

Yes, a kitchen for every occasion! This included a bakery, a pâtisserie room, a dairy, a dairy scullery, a meat and fish coldroom – and the largest ‘spit’ I’ve ever seen for perfecting the Sunday roast! Impressive! ??

Just a quick look at part of the formal gardens before ending our visit taking a peek at Lanhydrock’s own Fire Service! (every home should have one!)

2.23pm: It was goodbye to Lanhydrock and our rather hurried visit today. More time next time! ?

3.17pm: After a good journey from Lanhydrock, we arrived at our bed for the next three nights…

The Mill End Hotel

5.45pm: We’re out to catch up with Rich and Nicki and their friends, John and Gaynor at The George in Hatherleigh. ?

The George, Hatherleigh

See you tomorrow! ?

Tomorrow, our penultimate day, we’re planning to visit Dartmoor Prison Museum, Castle Drogo and Hound Tor.
Night-night! ????

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