Bringing the woods to life

The woodlands here at Penrose are a diverse mix of ancient, semi natural and Victorian plantings that form the stunning backdrop to Cornwall’s largest natural freshwater lake, Loe Pool. Our goal is to bring the woods to life, not only by improving it for wildlife but by introducing new access routes and creating opportunities to have new experiences with our outdoor spaces.

The woodlands are very much part of a designed landscape and were heavily influenced in Victorian times. The Rogers family, who owned the estate from the 1700s until 1974, contained many keen arborists and Penrose is linked with some of the early introductions of Pine trees to this country from the Americas.
 
A more recent addition to the woodlands at Penrose is the Willow Carr of the Cober valley which, despite its youth is no less rich in its ecology and is designated a SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest). Over the past 100 years it has established on the silt laden valley floor formed from the mining works that once helped drive the wealth of Penrose.
A Heron in the woodlands at Penrose
A heron rests in the woodlands at Penrose

The woodlands are also hugely important for wildlife. Our woods are home to a myriad of wonderful species such as the Tawny Owls, Greater Spotted Woodpeckers and most impressively here at Penrose, Bats! Most bats in the UK evolved to roost in trees. Around three quarters of British bat species are known to do so. Trees provide shelter and attract a diverse range of insect species for bats to feed on. If you are at Penrose come dusk you can’t fail to see these beautiful creatures emerge in there thousands.

Enjoying the smells and sight of the woods
A dog enjoys the bluebells
Spring hasn’t officially sprung at Penrose until the bluebells flower, creating a purple blanket across our woodlands, hedgerows and fields. The UK is home to about half the world’s population of bluebells, and with these beautiful flowers only blooming once a year in late April/May it is a must see when visiting Penrose.
Rangers working on a tree at Penrose
Rangers sawing a large piece of tree at Penrose
The woods aren’t only productive for wildlife they provide a huge resource that helps keep the estate running. As part of our management any timber extracted can be used for a variety of purposes, such as feeding our biomass boiler to help heat the stables complex, providing timber for benches throughout the estate, and for use with local schools for den building and bush craft.
A Ranger working in the woodlands at Penrose
A Ranger at Penrose working in the woodlands