Visit St Austell and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
St Austell, Cornwall. The china-clay capital: the spoil heaps like white mountains behind the town when approached from the East. The clay is used in making paper, face-cream, paint, some medicines and numerous other products as well as for porcelain. William Cook-worthy discovered it in Cornwall in 1755. The first pits opened soon afterwards, and St Austell grew steadily from a tin-mining village into a much more densely populated town. Yet its centre has more the air of a market town than an industrial one.
Its church built of stone from Pentewan, some 4 miles South, is exceptional. Its l5th-century tower is decorated, finely and unusually for a Cornish church, with sculptured figures. Inside, a curious thing is a pronounced bend in the axis of the church at the entrance to the chancel. Whether this was for dramatic effect, or due to a building difficulty, or accidental, or to symbolize the droop of Christ's head as he died on the Cross, no one is sure. There is a fine late-Norman font and a good waggon roof.
Just South of the main street (Fore Street) is a pedestrian precinct with overhead walkways and the like. Of the other modern buildings locally the biggest of the china-clay driers is impressive. It is on the outskirts of the town, well-seen from Trewoon, 1 mile West on the Newquay road.
But after the church the important thing not to miss is Menacuddle Well, about ¼ mile out, on the left of the Bodmin road. It is an enchanting place, with rhododendrons, one at least 30 ft high, growing among great beeches, a stream, made milk-like by china clay, pouring over small waterfalls; a bridge over it leading to a tiny granite shrine over a Holy Well, the waters of which, it was believed, strengthened weakling children; nearby, a granite chair.
On the top of a hill about 1¼miles North East of the town centre is the tremendous Carclaze mine. Originally an open-cast tin-mine, then worked for china clay, it is now used for purifying the latter.
Two of the nicest seaside places locally are Porthpean and Ropehaven, about 1½ miles and 3 miles South respectively. Charlestown, about 1 mile South East, is a small china-clay port, surprisingly pretty with late-Georgian houses and a good beach close by. There is good bathing here in the shelter of Carlyon Bay.
Nearby towns: Bodmin, Fowey, Lostwithiel, Mevagissey, Par, St Austell, St. Mawes, Truro
Nearby villages: Boconnoc, Braddock, Bugle, Creed, Golant, Grampound, Ladock, Lanivet, Lanlivery, Lanteglos, Lerryn, Luxulyan, Mitchell, Pentewan, Philleigh, Probus, Roche, Ruan Lanihorne, St. Blazey, St. Clement, St. Columb Major, St. Dennis, St. Enoder, St. Eval, St. Ewe, St. Mawgan, St. Stephen, St. Veep, St. Winnow, Stenalees, Tregoney, Tywardreath, Veryan, White Cross, Withiel
Have you decided to visit St Austell or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a St Austell bed and breakfast (a St Austell B&B or St Austell b and b)
- a St Austell guesthouse
- a St Austell hotel (or motel)
- a St Austell self-catering establishment, or
- other St Austell accommodation