The Witches is one of my favourite childhood films. You’re probably familiar with it. Based on the book by Roald Dahl, it tells the tale of recently orphaned Luke and his grandmother, as they attempt to rid England of witches, who are conveniently meeting at the same hotel where they are both staying. Their grisly goal is to turn all the world’s children into mice.
Whilst staying in sleepy Veryan, near Truro, we decided to seek out the famous hotel where the film was set. The Headland Hotel in Newquay is poised precariously close to crashing waves riddled with surfers. This is a very witchy part of Cornwall indeed.
To start with though, here are a few pictures of Veryan and neighbouring Portloe, which are too pretty not to post.
The hotel itself is a beguiling mix of old and new, the colour scheme of red and green is almost festive.
One avid fan, even made a replica model of the hotel.
I would seriously love to stay here. Look how gorgeous the staircase is!
This is one of the rooms where filming took place. Supposedly, it’s Luke and his grandmothers room.
Here’s the hotel from the outside, looking pretty formidable.
We enjoyed a drink in the Terrace, wondering if any of the other diners were going to turn into mice after eating the soup.
Here’s the bench from where the young mother’s pram is pushed towards the sea. Luke heroically goes to rescue the baby and narrowly evades capture by the witches.
Here’s an impressive look at the hotel as you approach.
I think these are the balconies of Luke, his grandmother and the Grand High Witch. The Grand High Witches room is at the bottom whilst Luke and his grandmothers is at the top. If you remember, the grandmother drops her knitting ‘by accident’ to distract the Grand High Witches cat from eating Luke whilst he, in mouse form, tries to steal a vial of the witches potion that transforms children into mice.
There’s only one way to complete a trip like this, going home and watching ‘The Witches’ in front of a nice cosy fire! This was a very satisfying Adventure List tick for my inner child!
All my love