Tuesday 16 April 2019

33 Photos: A Circular Walk Based On Gover Valley, St.Austell, Cornwall

Gover Valley, St.Austell, Cornwall

A different sort of Cornish walk today, with no beautiful beaches or cliffs! Instead the 33 photos will take you on a circular walk starting in Gover Valley, St.Austell and through some of the old china clay district.

The walk starts in Gover Road, St.Austell. There are usually several places to park a car. Walk up the road to the viaduct and you are then properly in Gover Valley.

Gover Valley Viaduct, Cornwall

The London to Penzance train travels over the viaduct. There is greenery while you walk.

Gover Valley, Cornwall

The first sign of any industry from the past is the large chimney on the right hand side of the road.

Gover Valley Chimney, Cornwall

There are a few cottages and also an old chapel has been converted into living accommodation.

Cottages in Gover Valley, St.Austell, Cornwall

The track is in reasonably good shape and the occasional car might be seen.

Gover Valley, Cornwall

More china clay workings to the left of the road.

China Clay workings, Gover Valley, St.Austell, Cornwall

Another photo below of the track.

Gover Valley, Cornwall

You'll pass a pleasant house tucked away ...

House in Gover Valley, Cornwall

... and they have put up an old road sign just in case you get lost!

Old sign post to Truro and Newquay, Cornwall

A small stream follows the valley.

River in Gover Valley, St.Austell, Cornwall

There are some more china clay workings on the right hand side of the track.

Old ovens once used in the china clay industry

There is a sign that directs walkers to to the left for a shorter walk but we go straight on ...

Public Foot Path, Gover Valley, Cornwall

... and avoid going over the wooden bridge.

Small wooden Bridge, Gover Valley, St.Austell

The path gets stonier.

Footpath in Gover Valley, St.Austell

Many of the trees are covered in moss because of the dampness of the valley.

Trees in Gover Valley, St.Austell, Cornwall

The path gets narrower still.

Footpath in Gover Valley, Cornwall

To the right it's now possible to get a clear view of the countryside. The hills are the waste product from the china clay industry - but nature is taking them over.

China clay hills in Cornwall

The same clay hills but a closer photo.

China clay hills, St.Austell, Cornwall

At last the path leads to a road, with a wind turbine nearly hidden away. The road is very little used - we saw no cars or other vehicles as we walked. 

We walk left from here along the road, until we can get on to a footpath.

Wind turbine, Cornwall

There are china clay settling tanks to the right of the road.


The views on the left show green fields.

Views over countryside, Cornwall

It's also possible to see the sea! Unfortunately it was quite misty when we walked - but you can still make out Gribbin Head with it's tower.

Views across to Gribbin Head and the sea, Cornwall

The road forks, take the left fork and you'll see the Public Footpath sign. It may look like you are heading onto someone's private property but this is a legal footpath. A lovely new house is being built with glorious views.

Public Footpath sign

We pass what I presume was once a farm house.

Public footpath, St.Austell, Cornwall

The footpath is quite green, which shows that not many people walk this way.

Grass footpath, Cornwall

There are views over the countryside 

Countryside views Cornwall

... and we keep following the path.

Public footpath, St.Austell, Cornwall

Eventually we reach some houses where we have to turn left down Trevanion Hill. It's a proper road but there is only room for one car - so can cause a problem if two cars meet!

Trevanion Hill, St.Austell, Cornwall

We head down Trevanion Hill and there is a spot on the right where we can see the Gover Valley and its viaduct.

Gover Valley viaduct, Cornwall

Across the far side of the valley there is a farm with a few animals.

Farm on other side of Gover Valley, St.Austell, Cornwall

It's quite a drop going down the hill - but much easier than walking up the hill!


We arrive at the last photo and can see the chimney we saw in the fourth photo. We head down to the bottom of the hill, turn right and we are back where we started. Another walk completed. I think it took us about two and a quarter hours.

Gover Valley, Cornwall


  1. Bonjour Mike ! une marche à pied agréable pour les sens et le corps. Une bonne journée de détente à ce jour. Amitié à vous Mike !

  2. Thank you David - walking always lifts the spirits. Best wishes.

  3. This is a really varied & interesting walk and super photographs.

    1. Thank you David. It makes a change from the normal coastal and river walks - though I still prefer to be by the water.

  4. These paths could soon be taken over by a group of mountain bikers if their proposal gets go ahead from imerys

  5. So much peace in green countrysides. How lovely to do such a walk with a friend or with a dog perhaps.

    1. Thank you for leaving a comment. All good wishes.

  6. Good evening. My husband and I did this walk today. I used your photos as a guide. We picked a bad day weather wise. We missed out on the views. And couldn’t see the wind turbine for fog. But it was still wonderful. Peaceful and atmospheric. I have walked these paths before, as a child with my Grandad, over 50 years ago!!! It brought back memories. He was a clay worker who lived in Trenance place. Thanks so much for the fabulous guide. It was invaluable. You didn’t mention the very steep climbing tho. Lol. On a sticky humid day a bit tough. Highly recommend tho.

    1. Hello Deborah, thank you for your kind comment. I find this an interesting walk as each time I notice or see something different. Glad you enjoyed the walk. Another hot day today!
      Best wishes

  7. I now live in Australia but lived at Sunny Cottage (where the kennels are now) from 1976 to 1982 and I really didn’t want to leave there. People walking by would tell me things like the earth in our garden had to be brought in after panning for tin stopped in the stream and there used to be steam driven tractors going up and down the lane. There was a mine adit at the side of the garden and the cows in the field above would watch us when we were in the garden! There were old clay ovens in the back wall of the land behind where our bantams would get in and lay eggs if we weren’t careful.

    1. Thanks so much for your interesting comment. I walk that way often and know the old clay ovens etc. There is very little history of the valley on the Internet so your information is appreciated. It must be a whole different world in Australia - though many of the old Cornish miners made the trip searching for gold.
      All good wishes.

  8. Did this walk today and the guide is still very accurate!

    1. Thanks Michael, it's one of my favourite walks. Glad the photos are still accurate! Good wishes.

  9. You passed Carne farm and the building with the wall up against the path were the barns before they there converted. In the 60's-70's the farm was run by Kath and Ron Snell, their to boys Christopher and Phillip and Ron's parents ( not sure of their names, but I use to call them Uncle Pop and granny Snell) before that Mrs Beatrice Quntrill




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