Did you know that Penbugle Organic Farm is part of the historic Duchy of Cornwall estate?
This ancient Duchy was created under Edward III’s reign in 1337.
The estate still exists today, and we thought we would explore its history as we await the Coronation of King Charles III.
What is the Duchy of Cornwall?
The Duchy of Cornwall is a private estate, the management of which coincides with the views and the ethos of the current Duke of Cornwall.
The current Duke and Duchess of Cornwall are William and Catherine, who are also Prince and Princess of Wales.
Contrary to popular belief, the Duchy estate does NOT own the entire county of Cornwall!
It does, however, own various parts of it including Penbugle Organic Farm.
The Prince of Wales is not entitled to the proceeds or profits on the sale of capital assets but does receive an annual income which they usually generate
The Duchy Estate owns all of Cornwall’s foreshore, or coastline, and the fundus, otherwise known as the riverbed of the county and parts of neighbouring South Devon.
Other parts of the UK are owned by the estate including parts of Dorset, Somerset, Gloucestershire and Herefordshire.
Is the Dukedom Hereditary?
The Prince of Wales and the Duke of Cornwall are held by the same person yet are distinct from each other. The Duke of Cornwall is a hereditary title which is inherited at birth, or when a new monarch accedes to the throne.
The current Prince of Wales is the 25th Duke while the previous Duke, King Charles, was the longest serving Duke; in 2012, the former Prince Charles celebrated 60 years in the role.
Has the Duchy Always Owned the Land?
The Duchy has existed since 1337, and it thought to be the first duchy created in England.
Various manors and land have been added over the centuries.
After the Civil War and the set up on the Commonwealth in the mid 17th Century, some of the estates were sold off but were recovered under the Restoration.
Notable past Dukes include The Black Prince, who was seen as a caring Duke. He pardoned some payments from his Cornish tenants in 1357 on account of the Black Death pandemic.
The Black Death reached Cornwall in 1349 and was almost certainly brought here by ship. It is thought towns such as Truro and Bodmin lost up to half of their respective populations due to ‘the pestilence’.
Did the Late Queen Elizabeth II Visit Cornwall?
A young Princess Elizabeth visited Cornwall for a tour in Autumn 1949, when her father, King George VI was on the throne.
During this post-war visit, the then Princess arrived in Exeter where she laid a tablet to mark the rebuilding of the city, which was largely destroyed during enemy air raids in the Spring of 1942.
She then went to Princeton, the moorlands of Dartmoor, Plymouth, before spending time on the Duchy of Cornwall Estate.
Then in 2013, Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh visited Marazion, St Michael’s Mount and St Ives.
What About the Farm and other Estates?
In the late 19th Century, some of the farms were refurbished.
The Duloe Estate, geographically close to us, was acquired in the 1951.
The Duchy includes around 570 kilometres of land across several counties.
Duchy Home Farm
In 1985, Duchy Home Farm converted into being a completely organic farm.
Here at Penbugle, we have been on a similar journey.
We will post a blog very soon about this part of our Penbugle life.
Duchy Originals, or Duchy Organics, was set up by the former Prince of Wales in 1990.
The main aim was to sell organic food products.
In 2010, the brand went into partnership with Waitrose.
One of the key aspects of the enterprise is to help small and medium sized producers, and it operates separately from the Duchy of Cornwall.
Waitrose Duchy Organic is available both instore and online and we supply our delicious organic eggs to the well-known brand.
One to key aspects of this is that Waitrose products are farmed with respect for animals, in harmony with nature and using sustainable methods.
Here at Penbugle, we also supply health food shops, local restaurants, farm shops and delis in the local area, and we deliver to West Cornwall and Liskeard.
We also supply eggs to the Duchy of Cornwall Nursery, https://www.duchyofcornwallnursery.co.uk
Other Duchy Initiatives Over The Years
Terra Carta: where the private sector is encouraged to be sustainable.
Net Zero: the Duchy is committed to reaching Net Zero across its portfolio.
Soil Health: along with the Farm Carbon Toolkit, this helps to promote soil health and improve carbon performance. Two dedicated soil advisors visit all Duchy Farms offering advice about soil management.
Natural Capital: the Duchy includes an in-house team of ecologists, land agents and soil specialists working alongside the farmers.
What About the Future of the Duchy?
While the identity of the Duke of Cornwall will alter over time, the Duchy itself should remain in place.
Our world is changing, and our natural world is becoming ever more important.
As part of the Duchy, our farm will remain at the heart of everything we do.
What About the Royal Cornwall Show?
One of the biggest events in the Cornish Calendar is the Royal Cornwall Show which takes place at Wadebridge 8th, 9th and 10th June 2023.
The Royal Cornwall Show has all the trappings of a county agricultural show and is the annual event show of the Royal Cornwall Agricultural Association.
It’s always a fantastic event and of course most of us are ready to enjoy this real life experience once again.
Can I Visit Penbugle?
We also have our glamping cabins here at our working organic farm.
Why not book your glamping cabin in time for the Royal Cornwall Show?