Cornish favourites: Minack Theatre

In the far west of Cornwall, not many miles from Land’s End, the western most part of mainland Britain, is a most unusual place.

The Minack is a unique open-air theatre perched on the cliffs high above the Atlantic ocean.

In 1929, local drama enthusiasts put on an out-door performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream on a grassy meadow about a mile inland from the Minack. It was a great success and a couple of years later the players were looking for a venue to perform The Tempest.

Rowena Cade, who lived in Minack House, decided that the cliffs below her garden would be the perfect setting, and over the winter of 1931 and into 1932 she and her gardener, Billy Rawlings, moved endless granite boulders and earth, creating the lower terraces of the theatre, much as they are today.

source: Minack Theatre

In July 2015 I wasn’t there to see a play, but to visit the lovely sub-tropical gardens created in this rocky place, with views over the turquoise waters of Porthcurno Cove.

Visit original post | July 2015

18 Comments Add yours

  1. janesmudgeegarden says:

    It’s amazing to see those plants blooming in such a place, right there by the sea, Jude. I can’t begin to imagine the amount of sweat and labour that must have gone into creating that theatre.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Yes, it wouldn’t have been easy by any means. She was a very determined lady. And the plants are wonderful. I wonder what effect the snow has had on them.

  2. Tish Farrell says:

    Oh to see The Tempest there (without an actual storm of course).

  3. Beautiful pictures. We went to the Minack theatre last year (not to see a performance as all were sold out sadly). It’s a truly magical place. We’re soaking up the Cornish atmosphere this weekend as visiting daughter in Falmouth. Can’t wait

    1. Heyjude says:

      Falmouth is very nice. I hope the sun shines for you 🙂

  4. We didn’t get to go down into the theatre because there was a performance happening. Which would have been fine except that they had no signs out until we got to the gate after walking all the way up the hill, and the lady on the gate was exceptionally rude and said we could pay a pound each to peer over the edge at the top. It was a little disappointing.

    1. Heyjude says:

      There were two ladies in the shop when we were there and one of them was also terribly rude. If you don’t like working with people, then don’t work in that role!!

      1. I wonder if it was the same lady.

        1. Heyjude says:

          Well let’s hope she has left by now!

  5. beetleypete says:

    I don’t know why I missed the original post, but I have seen this theatre as a child. No play on at the time, but we went to look anyway. Back then, I was convinced it was Roman! 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete.

    1. Heyjude says:

      It is a fascinating place. I must try and get there to see a play.

  6. restlessjo says:

    You have chosen yourself a lovely bit of the world, Jude 🙂 🙂 More gardening activity this week? Mind that shoulder! Himself has been up ladders today, staining fascia board, if that’s the right expression. I hardly dare look and I’m sure he’ll be grumpy tomorrow, when it hurts. 😦

    1. Heyjude says:

      I do have several plants to put in to the raised beds, so maybe I shall have to pull out some of the forget-me-nots. Been cloudy and foggy so far this week, but I am optimistic that tomorrow might be better, if so we may head to a garden and lunch out too.

  7. Lucid Gypsy says:

    The view, the garden, how are you resisting going for a performance as well?

    1. Heyjude says:

      I’d love to see a play there, but those terraces are too steep for David with his vertigo issues. Thought about taking him to for his b’day, but realised he wouldn’t enjoy it.

  8. Joanne Sisco says:

    Wow – what a labour of love that would have been!! On a beautiful summer’s evening, it would be a magical place to see a play … although not so great when it’s rainy and blowing 😏

  9. This reminds me of the Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado, even if that lacks an ocean.

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