Thursday, 15 August 2013


Today we drove to Polperro a historical fishing village in Cornwall. Sheltered from the ravages of time and tide in its cliff ravine, it's an enchanting jumble of cottages, each one unmistakably the work of a Cornish fisherman. Packed tightly into a steep valley on either side of the River Pol, the quaint colour-washed cottages and twisting streets offer surprises at every turn.

The name Polperro is perhaps derived from the Cornish Porthpyra, meaning harbour of a man named Pyra. However Ekwall does not regard "pyra" as being a personal name and suggests it could be a name for the stream.

Wending your way through the traffic-free streets to the small harbour, you're treading the paths where barrows of fish were once carted and, under cover of night, brandy casks and tobacco bales were carried into their hideouts. Make no mistake, this peaceful fishing cove, mellow Polperro, was once a thriving centre for the area's smuggling. Wagonloads of contraband left here, some heading across Bodmin Moor en route to London. The 'freetraders' have long since sailed into folk history and the shining shoals of pilchards have gone.

This little brook that ran at the front of the cottages just made a special feeling as we walked into the village

This is the Joan the Wad and Piskey Shop. The piskey folk according to Couch's history of Polperro are about a span long, cald in green and wearing straw hats or little green caps on their heads. Two only are known by name Joan the Wad and Jack O'Lantren. The piskies are the cheery wonder workers of Cornwall. Their power is incalculable and whenever they abide good luck attends. Sir Arthur Quiller Couch in one of his books described how the maidens go to the well to intercede with the pisky for the name of their true love.

The village really reminded us both of the Dr Martin show on TV where the residents walk everywhere as there are no streets and it is a community of people who live within close proximity of each other.

This little shop didn't even have room for the shop keeper or the customer to step inside

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