Helping the Environment & Wildlife at Pengelly Retreat

At Pengelly Retreat we are blessed with a thriving and diverse range of habitats.   Our 5 acres of land with their lakes, stream, ponds, gardens, meadow and forest support a rich ecosystem of wildlife and birdlife.  Since we moved here, we’ve done a lot of work on the land to help support and sustain native Cornwall species and to encourage the wildlife diversity here.  We have chosen to partner up with the wonderful Cornwall Wildlife Trust in order to support their work across Cornwall and to further develop our eco-approach here.  And we were thrilled when Pengelly Retreat was chosen as the Gold Winner in the Wildlife Friendly category at the Cornwall Tourism Awards in November 2022.

Native Cornwall Species & Wildlife

Since moving to Pengelly, we have added more than 500 native species trees including rowan, hawthorn and birch and continue to plant trees, working in conjunction with the Woodland Trust on this.  Our focus is to make sure the land provides a diversity of habitats to sustain the plentiful wildlife here – we have seen hedgehog, deer, fox, badger, otter and water voles.  We’ve planted several areas of wildflower meadows to encourage the bees and butterflies, of which there are many, attracted by the water and flowers;  we also have a very healthy population of honey bees who live wild in one of the old ash trees.

Lakes & Water

We have changed the way the water flow works between the lakes and ponds here to remove the need for electric pumps, it’s all gravity fed now.  The stream-fed lake is thriving with a large population of wild brown trout and beloved by beautiful dragon flies and mayflies.  A myriad of birdlife species are also attracted to the water, we often see swallows dipping into the lake, kingfisher and grey heron.  It also provides a home to wild ducks and moorhen. We’ve built a lagoon, fed by the stream, which provides a great habitat for insects and frogs.

Low Impact Accommodation

We’ve made our both the Boat House cabin and the Sail House yurt low impact on the environment by using natural materials where possible, such as wood and canvas.   We choose to keep the accommodation here at Pengelly Retreat just to the two beautiful houses to allow our guests (and the wildlife!) an abundance of space and nature without over-building.

Recycling & Re-use

We encourage our guests to recycle as much as possible, we have a dedicated recycling area and all refuse is collected by a zero-landfill private waste contractor who separates this into recyclables and general waste.  We are working to reduce single-use plastics, for example we use Who Gives a Crap toilet roll which comes without any plastic packaging.  When furnishing our beautiful lakeside houses we’ve included pre-loved items such as the table in the cabin or the outside bath – it may have a few marks from it’s former life, but it works beautifully!  We make our own compost, roughly 2-3 tonnes a year, all lovingly spread back onto the gardens.

Shopping & Spending Locally

We encourage our guests to buy local providing them with information about the local farm shops and giving them a discount code on food boxes from a local supplier.  We also provide all our guests with really detailed information packs on what they can do in the local area including eating out and shopping.

Cornwall Wildlife Trust

We are a Wilder Business Member supporting the fantastic Cornwall Wildlife Trust who work to “Create a Cornwall Where Nature Thrives”.  Being a Gold Partner (one of only a handful in Cornwall) means that we donate a proportion of our turnover to the Trust – which in turn means that all our guests staying here directly benefit and support the precious environment and wildlife in Cornwall.  To see more about the work that the Cornwall Wildlife Trust do, including fascinating events and talks, please have a look at their website here: