For nearly 500 years, Pencarrow has been the much-loved home of the Molesworth-St Aubyns, ever since John Molesworth arrived from Northamptonshire to become the Auditor for the Duchy of Cornwall and Queen Elizabeth I. Still owned by his descendants, Pencarrow is anything but a museum. Family photos, children’s toys, hats on classical busts bring this Cornish mansion alive and allow you a glimpse of what it’s like to live surrounded by so much history. The Monkey Puzzle tree was named here when Charles Austin, a friend of Sir William’s who came to dinner and on seeing the tree exclaimed “that tree would puzzle a monkey”. Also recently re-planted,The Monkey Tree Avenue, our mile long carriage drive, to replicate the Avenue in Sir William’s day.
I have travelled the lengths and breadths of the British Isles to bring you my Top 100 Gardens and believe me, with so many fantastic ones to chose from, my job wasn't made easy. The vast gardens here at Pencarrow come with a huge amount of history and to understand the gardens themselves, you somewhat need to understand the creators themselves, the radical statesman and later Secretary of State for the Colonies, Sir William Molesworth, along with his head gardener, Thomas Corbett. Sir William was very well respected in Cornwall, especially by the counties farmers, some of which also played their part in the gardens creation. Pencarrow is a botanical wonderland, both spectacular and intriguing and you won't find it hard to understand why I have featured them as one of my Top 100 Gardens in Britain. Also, if your lucky, you might catch a place on a house tour, I hear they are not to be missed.
Ideally located in the picturesque town of Lostwithiel, dine in the heart of a historical destination. With many dishes to satisfy your tastebuds, fall under the spell of their modern and stylish British cuisine. *