Castleview Bed and Breakfast
Solardome® glasshouse provides views fit for a king in Cornwall.
Nestled in the heart of King Arthur country on the windswept north coast of Cornwall is the Castleview Bed and Breakfast owned by Brian and Sandy Spiller. Affording magnificent views of Tintagel Castle and the Atlantic Ocean, it is home to a Solardome® glasshouse which was bought at the Chelsea flower show over 25 years ago as a way of adding another dimension to its spectacular outlook.
“The Solardome® glasshouse first caught my eye because I was conscious that I should not buy anything that would ruin the spectacular views from our house, like an ordinary greenhouse would. It fitted the bill perfectly and actually enhances the outlook. Its natural strength was also important; the Atlantic Ocean is practically at the bottom of the garden and we are hammered by Atlantic storms for much of the winter.
I have lost count of the hurricane-force winds our Dome has stood up to, including the infamous ‘Michael Fish’ hurricane of 1987 where forecasters failed to predict the severity of the weather. We lost part of our roof and the village was a shambles, but the Solardome® glasshouse stood strong.
I use my dome mainly as a greenhouse to nurture bedding plants and vegetable seedlings early in the season. Later, I remove the staging and plant about 30 tomato plants and cucumbers to keep us going. I have run wires horizontally between the main frame disks to train the tomatoes. This has worked extremely well and affords me much more growing space than a conventional greenhouse.
It also creates a wonderfully relaxing environment; I have a chair in there where I spend many hours watching the garden birds, pricking out the seedlings and enjoying the local radio.
Being in Cornwall, many of our guests comment on our ‘mini Eden project’. I’m always pleased to tell them that I had a dome many years before the Eden Project was built! Our dome has lasted over a quarter of a century and is still as good as new. Not many things can claim that nowadays.”