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Os Grid ref:-

PolkerrisThe small hamlet of Polkerris lies in a picturesque location at the end of a sheltered valley on the eastern side of St. Austell Bay and lies just two miles to the west of the town of Fowey. The hamlet lies on the South West Coastal Path.

The small, curved, sandy beach at Polkerris is situated in an idyllic sheltered cove. A curved stone quay protects the cove and a pub, the Rashleigh Inn, a 300-year-old former coastguard station, stands more or less on the south west facing beach. The pub/restaurant serves a varied menu and it is a popular location with holidaymakers, there is also a beach shop and takeaway. Watersport equipment is offered for hire and tuition is available. Dogs are allowed on the beach from October through to March.

Most of the hamlet, which is known in Cornish as Pollkerys, meaning fortified pool, is owned by the influential Rashleigh family, their residence, near Menabilly was the Manderley of Daphne du Maurier's famous novel, "Rebecca" which was later made into a film by Alfred Hitchcock

Polkerris was once a busy pilchard fishing harbour. The old pilchard-curing cellar, beside the shore was one of the largest in Cornwall. The lime kiln which stands on the quayside dates from the eighteenth century and was built by Philip Rashleigh. It was once used to burn limestone and to produce lime for conditioning the soil for the local farmers.

Polkerris also offers attractive coastal walks to Par or down towards Gribbin Head. The headland boasts some superb sea views. There is a nature reserve towards the nearby village of Par. This Par Beach nature reserve lies behind the immense sands of Par Beach. Its habitat of sand dunes, reed beds and lagoons is home to a varity of wildlife. Birds to look out for include Kingfishers, Lapwings, Buzzards, Kestrels and Reed Warblers. Plant life is varied too. Look out for Pyramidal Orchids, Meadow Foxtail and the rare Cornish Moneywort. Fun family days with activities such as scavenger hunts and beach sculpture contests are occasionally held at the nature reserve.

A walk from Polkerris to Fowey

Distance - around 7 miles

*Commencing at the car park at Polkerris, proceed down to the sea, prior to arriving on the beach turn left past the post office taking a further left turn by the black and white building and follow the path.

*On reaching a road turn right, continuing along the road until reaching a waymark path to Tregaminion Farm. Follow the path, passing the farm and across fields to arrive at Trenant. Proceed across fields to reach a stile. Pass through Menabilly Wood and under a bridge, before ascending from the valley.

*On arriving at Lankelly Farm, turn on to a lane and then turn right. Continue straight on upon reaching a junction and turning left at the next junction. After walking for around four hundred metres turn right onto Love Lane leading down to Readymoney Cove on the outskirts of Fowey.

*Retrace your steps to return.

Image copyright Chris J Dixon