Wembury, Plymouth, Devon, PL9 0EQ

Along the shores of the River Yealm, east of Wembury is an historic house called Thorn House. The spectacular historical 9 acre garden, created by William Arkwright, holds a fascinating selection of unusual mature trees and plants from around the globe.

The architecture and vegetation have been heavily influenced over the last 100 years by an eccentric mix of owners and visitors, including the Prince of Wales who regularly visited in the late 1800s.

The garden is the real treat of your visit. Enjoy outstanding vistas through mature tree canopies down to the glistening river below. A scented rose garden borders immaculately trimmed hedges, while the ‘Long Walk’ has breathtaking views towards the mouth of the river.

The garden surrounds an elegant house, previously known as South Wembury House. It was occupied during the early 19th century by the mayor of Plymouth, Edmund Lockyer.

In 1876 the property was sold to Richard Cory, a successful London coal merchant, and in 1920 changed hands again. It was purchased by the eccentric William Arkwright, a descendant of Richard Arkwright who had made a fortune in cotton spinning.

Private tours of the garden are available by appointment, which includes a traditional Devon cream tea. Thorn also offers a wonderful venue for events including weddings, garden parties and company retreats.

You can also stay at Thorn House, if you are looking for a bank holiday escape from the hustle and bustle. Conveniently located just outside Plymouth, Thorn House has the perfect blend of urban, countryside and sea side. The nearby village of Wembury has a number of cosy pubs and quiet eateries.

Everything you could possibly want is just a few minute’s drive away from Thorn House, one of Devon’s hidden gems.