The National Lobster Hatchery educates at every level, from pre school groups to postgraduate students. As well as delivering modules on the Marine Aquaculture Foundation Degree & Marine Conservation Foundation Degree at Cornwall College, Newquay and the MSc Sustainable Aquaculture Systems Degree at the University of Plymouth, we offer student placements, scholarships and in-house lectures and an interactive tour of our scientific work and aquaculture techniques at the hatchery.
The staff at the hatchery are highly qualified with vast experience in business, aquaculture, fisheries and the aquatic trade so we are happy to tailor the visit to your requirements.

Information for teachers

The National Lobster Hatchery is one of the few marine biology laboratories in the world, open to visitors. As well as seeing first hand the fascinating progression of a lobster from egg to adult and learning about our own conservation and research work, children can learn about the wider marine environment and why we should protect it.

At the hatchery we are committed to increasing awareness of marine conservation issues and can offer a variety of unique educational opportunities that cover a variety of topics in the national curriculum. We are also perfectly happy to help you tailor your visit to include activities or group requirements not specifically mentioned in our programmes.

Our educational programmes are aimed at stimulating imagination and creativity as well as improving environmental awareness and educating pupils of the importance of conserving our marine environment and its living resources.










Pre-visit activities

The North Cornwall shoreline contains a wealth of easily accessible habitats such as rocky shores, sandy shores and estuaries. Why not visit a local shoreline to look for sea creatures then bring them back to the hatchery to look at them closer. You could use the microscopes to examine your catch closer and discuss why each organism lives where it does.

Padstow is a lively fishing port and the fishing boats and equipment can be safely observed. Children could observe the different types of fishing boats and discuss why we need fishing and what happens if too many fish are caught.

The Padstow Museum holds an interesting collection of artefacts giving an insight into the history of the Port of Padstow over the past two centuries. It was from here that many Cornishmen and their families embarked for a new life in North America after the collapse of the Cornish Tin mining industry.


As well as a fascinating visitor centre and working laboratory, the hatchery houses first class teaching areas and teaching facilities consisting of a large lecture room with multimedia projector, hearing loop and whiteboard and microscopy facilities.

Catering can be provided on request or if you want to bring your pack lunches, you are welcome to eat it in the warmth of the lecture room.

Our location next to the Camel estuary and the nearby beaches, combined with the benefit of our facilities, expertise in identifying aquatic organisms and explaining aspects of the marine environment, makes the National Lobster Hatchery the ideal base for field trips to the coast.

For your tour, lecture or fishy activity ring us on 01841 533877 or email so that we can tailor your day to suit your needs.

This education/research facility was part funded by:

Objective One European and Objective 1 Funded The Ernest Cook Trust