Exploring and celebrating the wonderful Cornish hedges of the Penwith Peninsula
Penwith is home to many miles of Cornish Hedges, perhaps up to 5,000 miles! These stone and earth features are an important part of the Penwith landscape, providing vital field boundaries and forming a key part in Penwith's biodiversity. Hedges across Penwith vary in date, however some of the oldest are thought to be around 4000 years old, making them as old as the pyramids in Egypt!
This page shares information and resources on Cornish hedges - their structure, history, wildlife and importance.
What is a Cornish hedge?
So what exactly is a Cornish hedge? To answer the question Craig Johnson from the Squashbox Theatre has created this short film for us. Enjoy!
Would you and your family like to learn more about Cornish hedges in a fun and interactive way? We've created a hedge activity pack - with a number of fun activities for all the family. Can you pick the right stones to mend the Cornish hedge? Or find the right path for mouse to climb from the bottom of the hedge to the top? Or maybe you prefer classic puzzles such as a word search or crossword. Click on the links below to view and download the pages - and have fun!
- Cornish Hedge Activity Pack page 1 - Introduction
- Cornish Hedge Activity Pack page 2 - Wordsearch
- Cornish Hedge Activity Pack page 3 - Mouse Maze
- Cornish Hedge Activity Pack page 4 - Help repair the Cornish Hedge
- Cornish Hedge Activity Pack page 5 - Find the hidden animals in the Cornish Hedge
- Cornish Hedge Activity Pack page 6 - Cornish hedge maths!
- Cornish Hedge Activity Pack page 7 - Divide up fields with Cornish Hedges
- Cornish Hedge Activity Pack page 8 - Join the Dots
- Cornish Hedge Activity Pack page 9 - Crossword
- Cornish Hedge Activity Pack page 10 - Cornish Hedge game (for 2 or more players)
- Cornish Hedge Activity Pack page 11 - Answers (No cheating! Try the puzzles first)
Artistic Appreciation of our Cornish Hedges
As part of our Virtual Cornish Hedge week in April 2021, we ran a competition asking for the best photographs of our wonderful Penwith Hedges, with some terrific results! In the summer of 2022 we also commissioned two artists, Amanda Richardson and Sara Bevan, to record creatively the same section of a Cornish hedge throughout the seasons of the year. See the top photo contest entries and the artistic commission by clicking here.
Repairing Penwith's Hedges
Repairing and restoring some of Penwith's Cornish hedges has been one of the many tasks our volunteers have undertaken in Penwith. Through their work some of these heritage structures will now be able to stand for many years to come!
Cornwall Rural Education and Skills Trust (CREST)
The Cornwall Rural Education and Skills Trust, known as CREST, was founded in March 2023 in to address the need for training in the craft of Cornish hedging and raise awareness of the rich value of hedges in the landscape, following the formal recognition of Cornish Hedging as an endangered craft by the
Heritage Crafts Association.
For more information and to enquire about training courses contact firstname.lastname@example.org