Mystical Camelford

There is a romantic notion that Camelford is linked to Camelot, thanks to its proximity to the seat of the King Arthur legend - the clifftop castle at Tintagel, which is less than ten miles away. There is also an Arthurian Centre at nearby Slaughterbridge which celebrates - and perpetuates - the mythical story of Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table. But the name Camelford actually derives from the River Cam, which flows through this old market town in the Camel Valley.

Camelford was granted a Royal Charter as long ago as 1259 and it certainly looks the part. Its location between Launceston and Wadebridge brought prosperity that resulted in the erection of many impressive buildings, many finished with slate from nearby Delabole Quarry.

Camelford is 700ft above sea level, making it one of the highest towns in the country, but it is still overlooked by the iconic Roughtor on Bodmin Moor, a Bronze Age site.

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There are rich pickings for archaeology fans near Camelford. Helsbury Castle at Michaelstow is an Iron Age hill fort and at St Breward you will find Fernacre, one of the largest stone rings in Cornwall, and St Arthur’s Hall, first mentioned in documents of 1584.

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The chance to wander around Camelford to see some lovely architecture of the 18th and 19th century ranging from the library, in what was the old town hall, to merchants’ homes and even a building used to house prisoners from the Napoleonic War.