Discovering Local Culture

Discovering Local Culture

Think of the lakes and you think of the modern water supply structures but look closer and you’ll discover a long history of land use: Mesolithic man in the Wolf Valley at Roadford, ancient stones at Stithians near Redruth, hut circles and farmsteads at Fernworthy on Dartmoor, Drakes Leat supplying water to Plymouth from Burrator and Cornish china clay mining at Wheal Martyn near St Austell. We want to uncover the rich history of our sites so local communities and visitors can understand what’s at the lakes. We want to inspire people and communities to be involved in their special heritage.

Help us to make sure our rich history and culture is preserved and remembered.

Current project

At Wheal Martyn there is lots planned to enable visitors to discover more about their heritage and culture. One of our projects ‘Clay Works!’ is currently being developed thanks to funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Arts Council England. This project focuses on a redundant building where our ambition is to create exhibition space that can display changing exhibitions and to provide for much needed indoor learning space. This project will also address some accessibility issues inherited with the museum and will offer a variety of activities to children, young people and families whilst offering volunteer training opportunities in built heritage management.

We are due to submit our stage 2 Heritage Lottery application in November 2017.

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Our Trustee champion says-


“Through my time working at the lakes and now as a Trustee I have been continually surprised by the hidden histories of the lakes and reservoirs, I would like more people to be surprised about what they uncover on their doorstep.”
Jacqui Edwards

Burrator Project

One of our most successful projects has recently been delivered at Burrator Reservoir. Completing large and small built heritage restoration, habitat management, access improvements and most importantly delivering a wide community engagement programme. The Burrator Project enabled over 3,700 volunteers days, 5,000 adult and children learning places – many of which were taken up by people in difficult circumstances, a variety of public events to engage people with their local heritage and much needed interpretation provision.

With thanks to the Heritage Lottery Fund, South West Water, Dartmoor Sustainable Development Fund and Biffaward this project really did help the wider community learn about and engage with the heritage of Burrator Reservoir and beyond.