by Clifford Trethewey
Henry Westaway Trethewey’s life as a coastguard comes to an end. It is 1890 and he has no choice but to leave his idyllic surroundings at Boscastle and return to his home town of Plymouth. He has an offer of a job as a lowly Able Seaman in the newly built Royal Naval Barracks, so he settles with his family close to its gate, among the new urban sprawl of terraces that is becoming Plymouth’s suburbs. But life isn’t kind to Henry and it is cut short at the age of 47 before the century ends. The story then turns to his only son Nelson who decides to make Camels Head his home. He marries a local girl and they develop an enthralling life together. Nelson is confident in his abilities. He is versatile and inventive and their life provides a fascinating story. Their six children created their own colourful landscape and their outcomes were very mixed in an aura of humour, heartache, pathos and poignancy. Their paths led to Cawsand, Exbourne and Queensland Australia often doing things their contemporaries would not have dreamt possible. It brings the TRETHEWEY saga into modern times and when we leave it in 1962, Camels Head is changing and so is the family.
Nelson Trethewey with his wife Flora and their car - the Swift - at Camels Head in 1938.