Rame Head is the second smallest of the 12 sections that make up the Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) at just 7.8 km2. It does however make up for its lack of size with the wealth of treasures which this section contains.
These include the 865-acre Grade I Listed Mount Edgcumbe Country Park and Garden, the picturesque and tranquil, twin villages of Kingsand and Cawsand and a wealth of fortifications that date from the period of the American War of Independence (1775-83) through to the Lord Palmerston era in the 1850s.
To support the growth in sustainable, low impact tourism, the Cornwall AONB working with their partners Cornwall Council, Mount Edgcumbe Country Park, the Rame Conservation Trust and Sustrans is launching a new cycle route that will improve access for cyclists and pedestrians within the Rame Head section between the Cremyll Ferry and Cawsand. Funding by the South and East Cornwall Local Action Group to the tune of £15,113 through the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development has provided new waymarking and cycle parking to encourage more people to access the Rame Peninsula as well as to make trips by foot and cycle.
The Rame Conservation Trust own several of the fortifications referred to above just east of Mount Edgcumbe at Maker Heights and are actively working with the AONB on stabilising these important heritage features. Maker Heights commands a stunning view of most of the Rame Head peninsula and across Plymouth Sound towards Wembury, with a campsite open during the spring and summer as well as a café run by an ex River Cottage chef. Maker Camp has a huge significance for the people of Plymouth, since between the 1920s and 80s it hosted thousands of inner city children during school holidays and for many formed their only experience with the natural environment.
The cycle route will improve facilities for pedestrians and cyclists with new waymarking between Cremyll Quay and Maker with cycle parking facilities at the Barrow Centre in the Country Park, at Maker Heights and in Cawsand Village in the existing car park.
The investment in new provision also supports more area wide proposals by Cornwall Council and Sustrans to develop a network of strategic cycle routes across Cornwall and especially in South East Cornwall, better connecting Plymouth to Looe and Looe to Liskeard.
The route, which is now in place provides a perfect opportunity to explore this relatively undiscovered section of the Cornwall AONB as well as tackle a New Year’s resolution to lead a healthier and more active lifestyle.
images courtesy of Cornwall AONB