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By Graham Orris
This is the first in a series of articles on how to find “hard to find” sites.

My wife and I have been regular visitors to Cornwall for over a decade now, and have explored some areas in great depth, while other areas remain uncharted for us.

A site that particularly appealed to us was the so-called “Bosporthennis Beehive Hut” – a seemingly well-hidden mysterious gem of a site which has, by all accounts, eluded many people. I must admit the appeal of seeing this with our own eyes was heightened by the fact that not many people could find it!

The Beehive Hut as seen from the angle of approach.

The Beehive Hut as seen from the angle of approach.

It took us 3 attempts on 3 separate visits to find it, but when we did, the route we took was astoundingly simple.

Attempt number 1 was a non-starter due to my own terrible map-reading “skills”, and had us ending up in Bodrifty. Ahem. 😉

Attempt number 2 found us looking at a footpath from the Nine Stones of Boskednan stone circle (approx OS map ref SW435351). The path took us from the circle down the side of the hill (in a very roughly North-Easterly direction) toward a cottage marked on the OS map as “Brook Cottage”. As we approached the end of the road, a friendly resident appeared and very happily pointed us in the right direction for the continuation of the footpath through a field and over a style. The path on the other side of the style was completely overgrown with ferns that must have been over 7ft tall! We pushed our way gingerly through, but decided it was a non-starter as we simply could not see where we were heading. Cue the end of attempt number 2!

Attempt number 3 was an altogether different approach. We found a footpath which starts beside the Treen – Newmill road (approx OS map ref SW437373). Basically, if you have an OS map you should simply follow the footpath, across fields and through styles (you can generally see the next style/footpath sign from the one you’re at) and in around 25 minutes’ time you will see the beehive hut! It’s not hidden, it’s just… there! (Approx OS map ref SW437360) The feeling of actually finding it after several aborted attempts was amazing. But having seen how easy it is to find, it was also annoying that we’d not found it sooner! 😀

The walk is fairly even, and not too strenuous (if a little muddy), although not wheelchair-friendly and *possibly* navigable with only the sturdiest of pushchairs (with plenty of carrying) if taking young ‘uns. The overall walk is around one and a half miles and took us about 25 minutes at a fairly leisurely pace.

This is largely from memory, so please forgive any inaccuracies. If in doubt, just keep an eye out for the footpath signs on the styles or gates and you shouldn’t go wrong:

Starting at the road, enter the field by the footpath sign (approx OS map ref SW437373) heading SSE(ish)
Continue straight ahead to the next style at the far end then straight ahead again to the style in the far corner
Follow the wall along to the next style in the corner, now heading almost due South
Go straight ahead for the next 3 fields, curving slightly SSE toward the corner of the wall that juts out
Head roughly due South again for the next 2 or 3 fields until you reach a road/path that takes you over a stream
Follow the stream for about 2 fields until you find the footpath sign again
Head straight through the field to the far corner
In the next field, curve around to the next gate in the SE wall
Again, curve around to the SW, through the next gate, then due South
A short distance past this gate to the SW and you will see the Beehive Hut at the far end of the field.

Due to the amount of fields/styles/gates you go through it sounds a lot more complicated than it actually is. Some fields are very small and therefore I may have missed some out! If anyone manages to use these directions to find the site, please let me know. And please do let me know of any inaccuracies! 🙂

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