Wednesday, 22 April 2015

♥ Healeys Cornish Cyder Farm: Truro's hidden gem

The county of Cornwall might be best known for it’s tin and copper mining history, long sandy beaches, surfing conditions and of course the world famous Cornish pasty, but believe it or not, Truro offers a hidden gem a stone’s throw from the busy A30 that is desperate for you to visit: The Healey family's Cornish Cyder Farm, in Penhallow!

With only a few signs leading tourists and locals to it, it’s no surprise on a bitter Saturday morning, out of season, there were only a handful of cars parked up. Everybody at Healeys, however, knows that come the summer months the place will be full of visitors from home and abroad.

Earlier this year, Healeys opened their brand new visitors centre. It holds an overflow of the ever popular farm shop (it’s not your average farm shop, but I’ll get to that bit later on) and a select few of Donald Healey's cars. This adds a new element to the Healeys I remember from years ago, but it's clear that this has been in the works for quite some time now and seeing the new centre in all its glory is wonderful for both staff and visitors.

With the name Healeys Cyder Farm, it makes you wonder what exactly it is. Is it a working farm, a brewery or just another tourist attraction? I believe it to be the perfect mixture of all of the above. The staff within the family run business are beaming with joy and always happy to help wherever they can, be it the women in the jam kitchen, explaining how it's made, or young staff you'll spot feeding the miniature goats and those that offer to help in the shop. The site is home to Cornwall's first distillery in 300 years and they have some rather fancy and fine spirits on offer now - just another reason they had to extend out that pesky old farm shop. They've been making cider at the site since 1986 and now boast over twenty acres of orchards that are home to a variety of different apples that help make their ciders - take the famous tractor ride tour to see them for yourself!

For children and animal lovers, though, the farm animals will be the stars of the show. Healeys is home to a few rabbits, ferrets, billy goats, pigs, chickens, horses and the occasional peacock, which all make the place really enchanting. The old cobbled pavements that they walk on along side you, are just another hint to how long Healeys have been here.

The farm shop does offer you classic jams and sauces. From Strawberry to Gooseberry there is a condiment for everybody available from Healeys and when you've had a look at jam kitchen prior to buying, it really does give everything a homemade, locally sourced and natural feel.They obviously have a lot of cider on offer too. They have scrumpy, still and berry ciders, There is something to cater for every taste and the tankards you can buy to go with your cider are just beautiful. I never leave without a bottle of their berry flavoured Rattler cider and a jar of their strawberry jam and I always end up going back for more. If cider or jam doesn't take your fancy, there are many different types of wines, juices and spirits on offer, too. 

Healeys really is a brilliant day out, especially if you've never been before or are visiting the county for a short while. They have a variety of different tours on offer to visitors, starting at just £5 for children and £8 for adults to go on the classic tour, they have a package to suit every family and every visit. If you're not too fussed, though, you can have a stroll around unaccompanied free of charge. You're sure to see me there, having a glass or two over the summer months!

*This blog post was written as part of my Creative Writing degree and in association with Gorilla Guides. Visit their website here, to find some brilliant maps of Truro, Falmouth and the rest of Cornwall. They focus on independently run businesses and if you have any plans to visit Cornwall you're likely to find their beautiful maps in the businesses that they feature. Alternatively, you can download them from the website. Visit Healeys website here, to find out more about them and what they have an offer.

Em x


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