A wild day out with the Trust

Cornwall Wildlife Trust’s Wildlife Celebration - their biggest annual event, which showcases the work they do to protect Cornwall’s wildlife and wild places, this year moves to the stunning location of Caerhays Castle Gardens near St. Austell, and it promises to be a great event for all the family.

This year it will be for one day only, and capacity crowds are expected to attend on Sunday 20th May with people travelling from around the county to enjoy the host of wildlife activities. The event is supported by South West Water and by Caerhays who have generously donated the use of their magnificent gardens for the day.

Readers of the Trust’s ‘Wild Cornwall’ magazine can use a free entry flyer from the Spring edition, otherwise entry prices for Caerhays garden are as advertised. The gates open from 10.30am to 4.00pm. Car parking is free and cafes in the garden and on the beach will be open.

Special guests this year are Gillian Burke from BBC Springwatch, and the student animation team behind PocketPals an interactive wildlife app from Exeter and Falmouth universities.

All the popular annual attractions will be there with visitors will be able to get up close to a variety of wild creatures, watch wildlife demonstrations, as well as taking part in country craft activities, with nature walks and pond dipping sessions using Caerhays’ beautiful garden and beach to its fullest.

Gary Zammitt and Wiggy the snowy owl

Wildlife Watch, the Trust’s junior section will be running creative activities for young wildlife lovers, whatever the weather, and there will be the chance to take part in a beach clean and sand art competition.

The ever popular Feadon Farm Wildlife Centre will be bringing along some of their animals, giving visitors the chance to learn all about owls, hawks, buzzards, rodents and even snakes! The British Trust for Ornithology will be pointing out the resident wild birds and giving live bird ringing demonstrations, while rescued Cornish bats will be there with the Cornwall Bat Group.

Cheryl Marriott, Head of Conservation at Cornwall Wildlife Trust says,

“The Wildlife Celebration is our way of sharing what we do for Cornwall with our supporters. We love Cornwall and we love its wildlife, and this event gets everyone involved giving visitors a brilliant day out!”

“We hope that many visitors will feel as inspired as we are by the wildlife in Cornwall and join us not only for a great day out, but also want to get involved in the Trust itself through volunteering, surveying, wildlife recording, or just through becoming members. We are very grateful for the support from our Wildlife Partners South West Water and Caerhays Estate.”

The location at Caerhays is itself stunning with the natural beauty of the coastline and its steep valleys. The gardens originated from the work of plant hunters in China at the start of the 20th century and Caerhays bred the very first x williamsii camellias. It is today the home of a Plant Heritage National Collection of Magnolias containing over 600 species and named hybrids from around the world, and the gardens have an international reputation which have been described as 'world class'. Otherwise known as Porthluney, Caerhays Beach is a good south facing beach of sand overlooking Gerrans Bay.

The day’s programme of events is as follows:

11.00am to 11.30am Check bird boxes for chicks
11.30am to 12.30pm Wildlife photography walk
11.30am to 2.30pm Pond dipping sessions
12.30pm to 1.30pm Wildlife walk
2.00pm to 3.00pm Beach clean and sand art competition
3.00pm to 3.30pm Check bird boxes for chicks

Throughout the day

Meet the animals of Feadon Farm Wildlife Centre
Bird ringing demonstrations
Wildlife Watch nature craft activities for children
See nature in detail under the microscope
Nestbox making and woodland craft

For more details please go to www.cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk/celebration