The small town of Bodmin was once the county town of Cornwall until it lost that status to Truro. It is one of the oldest towns in Cornwall and the only town in Cornwall to be recorded in the Doomsday Book. St Petroc founded a monastery here and the 15th C church named after him is the largest church in Cornwall after Truro Cathedral.
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Places to vist and things to do near Bodmin
Bodmin Jail was built in 1779 during the reign of King George III with 20,000 tons of granite from Bodmin’s ‘Cuckoo Quarry’. Today it is a family attraction with fascinating exhibitions telling the history of this dark and mysterious place. Special events are held throughout the year and ‘after dark’ events are held on some evenings.
The Bodmin and Wenford Railway is a steam and heritage diesel line and provides an excellent way to explore the countryside around Bodmin. The station at Bodmin Parkway is linked to Lanhydrock by a 3km path; there is also direct access to the Camel Trail from Boscarne Junction and to Cardinham Woods from Colesslogget Halt.
Bodmin Moor is Cornwall’s largest area of high moorland; it is bisected by the A30. The eastern side is less wild and rugged than the rocky ridges of ‘Brown Willy’ and ‘Rough Tor’ to the west. The granite from the Cheesewring Quarry near the village of Minions was used to build Devonport Dockyard, Birkenhead Docks, and part of Copenhagen Harbour. It was also used in building the Thames Embankment, Westminster and Tower Bridges. Today you can visit the recently restored Houseman’s Engine House where there is an exhibition on the history and nature of the area.
There are also early Bronze Age monuments including the stone circles known as the ‘Hurlers’. To the west the River Fowey flows from near The Jamaica Inn at Bolventor, through the picturesque wooded gorge between Draynes Bridge and Treverby Bridge it then pours through the Golitha Falls, a nature reserve of great importance.