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The local area guide to living in Calstock

Calstock is a large village and civil parish in Cornwall, right on the border with Devon. It lies on the banks of the River Tamar, 10 miles north of Plymouth and 6 miles south west of Tavistock. A beautiful spot, it is within the Tamar Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty on the famously attractive Tamar Valley Railway.

The village was likely first settled before the invasion of the Romans, thanks to the area's abundance of naturally occurring minerals. Despite the Romans' general lack of success in conquering Cornwall, they established a fort in Calstock which was discovered in 2008 and is only the third known Roman fort in Cornwall.

After the retreat of the Romans, during Saxon times, Calstock was part of the Kingdom of Cornwall which stood firm against the press of Wessex. In fact, Calstock was the site of a fierce battle between the Kingdom of Cornwall and the easterners in the 9th century AD. Just over 200 years later Calstock manor was recorded in the Domesday Book, and at the time was valued at £3. Property in Calstock is a little more expensive now, but not extortionately so.

Like so many other places in Cornwall, the mining industry was hugely important to Calstock until its collapse in the early 20th century. Since then, it has increasingly relied on tourism for its livelihood - from which it does well due to its picturesque setting and proximity to Plymouth.

Information about the local residents

Calstock, population 6,400, has a very low rate of unemployment - just 1.5%, compared to England's 3.3%. The inhabitants, in general, belong to higher social grades than the rest of the country, with more occupants working in Higher administrative, managerial or professional roles than is usual. This is likely boosted by the ease of commuting to Plymouth.

The residents also report generally high levels of health, with 80% saying they are either in 'very good' or 'good' health. Perhaps there is something in the Cornish air after all. They also have generally high levels of education - nearly half are educated to level 3 or above according to the 2011 census.

As is normal in the South West, the average age is higher than that for the rest of the country at 45 and around 55% of the population are over 45.

With the imposing medieval building Cotehele House overlooking the town, and a thriving arts and music culture, Calstock is a highly popular town for visitors and has a unique community spirit. Regular events are held throughout the year for people of all kinds of persuasions and interests.

Nearby schools

Calstock Primary School has been a focal point of the community since 1902. Originally made up of just two main classrooms, it has since been expanded and has won awards for architectural design. It is a forward-thinking, welcoming school and is currently raising money to help the school power itself with solar energy.

With Plymouth and Tavistock just a few miles away, parents considering a move to Calstock are well blessed with further options for educating their children. Some of the very best schools, colleges, and academies in the South West are within easy reach.

Getting around

Calstock conveniently has its own railway station on the Tamar Valley Line from Gunnislake to Plymouth. It connects to mainline services at Plymouth, which is just half an hour away. Calstock also has relatively regular, reliable bus services.

By car, Calstock is a half hour, 17 mile drive from Plymouth along the A388 and a 15 minute drive from Tavistock on the A390. Day trips further into Cornwall are easy, with the pretty town of Looe just 20 miles away and Liskeard 15 miles away west on the A390.

Local shops

Calstock has a good selection of village essentials including several small supermarkets, a post office, myriad pubs and cafes and some interesting, independent craft and artisan stores.

For the more demanding shopper, Plymouth is easily accessible by car, bus or train and is replete with huge shopping malls, restaurants, boutique stores and big name outlets.


Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure the above information is up to date, some inaccuracies may occur. If you notice any inaccuracies please contact

All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.


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