St Tudy to Wetherham

A circular countryside walk from the 15th century church at St Tudy through the grounds of the 18th century Manor of Wetherham, returning to the church alehouse where ale brewed by the church was sold to raise funds, and later became the village lock-up known as The Clink.

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The walk starts from the village of St Tudy, crossing through fields and woodland to Wetherham Manor, before returning along a country lanes and footpaths to St Tudy, allowing a final stop at the St Tudy Inn.


Done this walk last Sunday a lovely walk not too strenuous and footpaths are in excellent condition at the moment
Thats a lovely walk having done that recently.
Have done this a couple of times, lovely walk.

Vital statistics

  • OS Explorer: 109
  • Distance: 2.4 miles/3.9 km
  • Grade: Easy-moderate
  • Recommended footwear: walking boots or trainers in summer

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  • Beautiful stained glass in 15th century Church of St Tudy
  • Pretty woodland around Wetherham, with bluebells in spring
  • Historic Wetherham Manor
  • Winding country lanes lined with pretty flowers in spring and summer
  • Local Cornish food and drink at 17th century St Tudy Inn

Pubs on or near the route

  • St Tudy Inn


  1. Facing the war memorial, turn left past the postbox and seating area to reach some steps. Turn right up the steps onto a path into the churchyard. Follow this to the church.

    St Tudy was formerly known as Eglostudic. The village church dedicated to a St Tudius, a sixth century abbot and missionary who was active in Brittany. It is doubtful whether he actually visited North Cornwall, but it could have been established by one of his monks around this time.

  2. From the church, go through the gate on the other side of the churchyard and bear right, past the school, to a junction.

    The present church in St Tudy dates from Norman times. It was extensively rebuilt in the 15th century, and repaired during the 19th century. It is built on the site of an earlier church of the 6th century; the circular churchyard is typical of Celtic churches from this period.

    Set into the stone hedge face of the churchyard is "The Clink": initially this was the church ale house, then became the local constable's lock-up (hence the name).

  3. Turn right and walk a few steps up the road to the public footpath sign on the left. Follow the path from the sign to reach a pedestrian gate.
  4. Go through the gate and bear left slightly to the gate in the corner of the fence ahead. Go through the pedestrian gate and cross the remainder of the field to a waymark near the corner of the fence.

    Church Ales were celebrations held within the church calendar, particularly at Whitsuntide and May Day, when ales were brewed and sold in order to raise funds for the Church or for good causes in the parish. With the growth of Puritanism in the late 17th century, drinking was seen as sinful. Church Ales were considered to be nothing but drunken disorders and were suppressed. Church houses were gradually abandoned, demolished or put to other uses.

  5. Step over the wall, into the next field. Cross the field to a stile in the far hedge directly ahead.

    The number of cows in Cornwall has been estimated at around 75,000 so there's a good chance of encountering some in grassy fields. The Ramblers Association and National Farmers Union suggest some "dos and don'ts" for walkers which we've collated with some info from the local Countryside Access team:


    • Stop, look and listen on entering a field. Look out for any animals and watch how they are behaving, particularly bulls or cows with calves
    • Be prepared for farm animals to react to your presence, especially if you have a dog with you.
    • Try to avoid getting between cows and their calves.
    • Move quickly and quietly, and if possible walk around the herd.
    • Keep your dog close and under effective control on a lead around cows and sheep.
    • Remember to close gates behind you when walking through fields containing livestock.
    • If you and your dog feel threatened, work your way to the field boundary and quietly make your way to safety.
    • Report any dangerous incidents to the Cornwall Council Countryside Access Team - phone 0300 1234 202 for emergencies or for non-emergencies use the iWalk Cornwall app to report a footpath issue (via the menu next to the direction on the directions screen).


    • If you are threatened by cattle, don't hang onto your dog: let it go to allow the dog to run to safety.
    • Don't put yourself at risk. Find another way around the cattle and rejoin the footpath as soon as possible.
    • Don't panic or run. Most cattle will stop before they reach you. If they follow, just walk on quietly.
  6. Cross the two stiles and continue ahead to meet the left hedge. Follow the hedge to the bottom of the field to a gate onto to a wooden walkway.

    The valley is known as Buzzard Valley.

    Buzzards breed once they reach 2-3 years old. During their breeding season in spring, male buzzards create spectacular aerial displays to impress females by soaring high into the air and dropping suddenly towards the ground. The birds then pair for life.

  7. Go through the gate and follow the walkway to a stile. Cross the stile and continue ahead to a pedestrian gate.

    The stream is meets another just before Wetherham manor and forms a tribuary of the River Allen.

    The Rivel Allen is a major tributary of the River Camel, joining it just above the estuary near Wadebridge. It was known as the Dowr Alen in Cornish, which is documented as meaning "shining river". There is also a River Allen in Truro, although that one is Dowr Lain in Cornish, so as long as you speak Cornish, you won't get them confused!.

  8. Go through the gate into the field and walk straight ahead past the opening on your left until you are opposite a metal gate on your right.
  9. Once you are opposite the metal gate and past the hedge on your left, turn left and follow the hedge on your left. Continue along the line of trees to reach a metal gate in the far hedge leading into the woods.

    There are some elder trees along the bottom of the meadow, should you fancy making some elderflower cordial.

    Elderflowers appear in late May and are easily recognisable as large white umbels on the shrubby green trees. If you are harvesting the flowers to make cordial or wine, avoid picking umbels where the flowers are going brown or haven't opened yet; they should be bright white with a yellow centre.

  10. Go through the gate and follow the path through the woods. Continue until you eventually reach a stile leading onto a track.

    To make elderflower cordial, remove the bitter stems from about a 20 flower heads and soak overnight in 1 litre of water containing the juice of 2 lemons. Strain the liquid and dissolve around 600g sugar to make a sweet cordial. To make dissolving the sugar easier, you can pre-dissolve the sugar in the water in advance by boiling the water and allowing it to cool before adding the elderflowers although you lose some of your sugar on the discarded elderflowers that way. Dilute with water or sparkling water to serve. It can be frozen for use at other times of the year.

  11. Cross the stile onto the track and turn right. Follow the track until it forks just past some granite gateposts.

    The size of the nuts from wild British chestnut trees is quite variable but the largest approach that of the nuts sold in supermarkets. Nuts that are very flat or less than the girth of your little finger are not worth harvesting; anything bigger is viable. A painless way to extract the nuts is to grip the husk between your feet and rub it between your boots or against the ground. This saves having to handle the spiky husks as the spikes are very sharp and tend to break off under the skin to leave behind splinters. Often the husks contain one (fairly round) large nut surrounded by several small, flat nuts, so it's worth squeezing out quite a few husks to get the larger nuts. Discard any nuts with holes in (as they will contain maggots) or that are very dark in colour - the fresher ones will be "chestnut" brown rather than dark brown.

  12. When the path forks, keep right (following the waymark) then keep left along the main path, following it to reach another waymark. Keep right here and follow it to a stone bridge over a small stream.

    Grey squirrels were introduced to the UK from the USA in the late 19th Century and within decades they had replaced the native red squirrel in most parts of the country.

  13. Cross the bridge and walk over the grass to a tarmac driveway then follow the grassy path opposite to a stone stile.

    During spring, wildflowers amongst the grass attract insects foraging for nectar such as bumblebees.

    During flight, bumblebees beat their wings around 200 times every second. However, the buzzing sound they make is not from the beating wings but from the bee's vibrating flight muscles. On cold days, by using their flight muscles, the bees are able to warm up their bodies to temperatures as high as 30 Celcius.

  14. Cross the stile onto a lane and turn left. Follow the lane uphill to a private concrete driveway on the left with double wooden gates. Continue uphill from this for roughly another 30 metres to a wooden gate into a field.

    In June, foxgloves flower along the lane.

    Foxgloves are reliant on bumblebees for pollination and bumblebees are much more active when the weather is good. As an insurance policy against bad weather, foxgloves have evolved to stagger their flowering over several weeks, starting with the flowers at the base of the stalk and working up to the top, where the higher flowers protrude over other vegetation that has grown up in that time.

    Both navelwort's Latin name and common name are based on its resemblance to a belly button. Other common names include wall pennywort and penny pies due to the shape and size resembling an (old) penny.

  15. Turn left to go through the gate and follow the fence on the left to a stile half way along the fence.

    If the path along the edge of the field is getting overgrown, or on the next direction, from the stile into the woods, please use the app to report this for cutting (as these are silver paths).

    Footpaths in Cornwall are graded "gold", "silver" and "bronze". For parishes that take part in the Local Maintenance Partnership, "gold" paths are normally cut once or twice each year whereas paths graded as "silver" are cut at the discretion of the Parish, so these in particular need to be reported to the Parish Council if they start to become overgrown.

    To do this, tap on the menu next to the direction number, select Report Issue and then Footpath Issue. This will create an email to Cornwall Council’s Countryside Team, automatically populated with details of the path, location and also the Parish so they can pass this on to the relevant Parish Council. If you can take a photo and attach this to the email, that will help them to see how bad it is and prioritise it.

    Routine cuts are typically done in May/June, and any second cuts are in July – September.

  16. Cross the stile and follow the fence on the left until you reach another stile.

    In August, blackberries start to ripen on brambles.

    Blackberries are closely related to raspberries and technically neither is a berry but an aggregate of many individual tiny fruits, each containing a tiny stone like a miniature cherry.

  17. Pass the stile and follow the path down into the woods, keeping right, until you reach a wooden footbridge over a stream.

    Wetherham Manor, near St Tudy, sits on a Saxon site (hence the name - "ham" meaning village or estate). It was recorded in the 14th Century as Wytherham. The rest of the name is thought to be derived from the Cornish word for woodland (similar to Withiel). Wetherham Manor had a colourful start to this millennium with the once owners being imprisoned for threatening bailiffs with a shotgun and evicted by the bank to the outbuildings with their dogs, cats, peacocks and "too many ferrets".

  18. Cross the footbridge and continue ahead to cross over the gravel and tarmac and then follow the wooded path ahead uphill to reach a waymark.

    A dovecote (also known as columbarium or culverhouse) is a mediaeval invention, used to farm pigeons for meat. The circular shape was so that a ladder could be attached to a revolving pole in the centre to reach the nest boxes high in the walls (as the birds prefer to nest high up, out of the reach of predators such as foxes). In the Middle Ages, only the Lord of the manor was allowed to keep pigeons and this wasn't relaxed until the 17th Century which is why dovecotes (especially old ones) are often found at manor houses.

  19. At the waymark, continue ahead and follow the woodland path to another waymark on a bend, by a stile.

    The woods contain some huge beech trees.

    Compared to many native trees, the beech colonised Great Britain relatively recently, after the last Ice Age around 10,000 years ago. Beech trees have a shallow root system and are therefore often found in areas where water is plentiful such as near rivers. In the 17th and 18th Centuries, tall, stately beech trees were very fashionable in the estates of wealthy landowners and many mature beech woodlands today are the result of 18th Century parkland landscaping projects.

  20. As you approach the waymark, keep right to go between the gate posts to the lane. Turn left onto the lane and follow it uphill to a waymarked stile on a bend next to Maenne Parc.

    The name is from the Cornish words mên, meaning stone, and parc, meaning field.

  21. Cross the stile and follow the path to another stile.

    Ivy is unusual in that it flowers particularly late in the year - from September to November - and therefore provide vital nectar for insects such bees and moths. Ivy berries are an important winter food source for birds and will remain on the plant all the way through the winter until spring. The berries also have a high fat content so provide a dense source of energy at a time when animals need lots to keep warm.

  22. Cross the stile and cross over the lane to a tarmac path just to the right of the garage directly ahead. Follow the path between the houses, turning right to follow the wall to a metal kissing gate into a playground.

    One in five of all known fungi form lichens. Studies suggest that many species of fungi that form lichens started out from ancestors that lived on organic waste. Fossils have also revealed that the symbiosis between algae and fungi dates back more than 400 million years roughly to the time when plants first evolved from green algae.

  23. Go through the kissing gate and cross the tarmac diagonally to reach a pair of wooden gates. Go through these and along an alleyway to the road.
  24. Turn left onto the road and follow it back to the war memorial.

    The St Tudy Inn (formerly the Cornish Arms) is a 17th century village inn, located at the opposite end of the short lane leading from the War Memorial. It was conveniently proximate to "The Clink", allowing anyone who became drunken and troublesome to find themselves in new accommodation within the time it took for the constable's pint to be poured.

Help us with this walk

You can help us to keep this walk as accurate as it possibly can be for others by spotting and feeding back any changes affecting the directions. We'd be very grateful if could you look out for the following:

  • Any stiles, gates or waymark posts referenced in the directions which are no longer there
  • Any stiles referenced in the directions that have been replaced with gates, or vice-versa

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