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OS Grid ref:- SX1451

PolruanThe small but extremely characterful old fishing village of Polruan, known in Cornish as Porthruwan, is located at the mouth of the River Fowey, lying just across the river from the busy port of Fowey, the village is famed for its boat building heritage.

PolruanPolruan's narrow streets cling to the hillside and lead down to the ancient waterfront and quay. Surrounded by water on three sides, the natural defences of the sea and the river rendered the area an inviting dwelling place for early settlers Dating back to the Bronze Age, many of the nearby farms are listed in Domesday Book of 1086.

The unspoilt village has a number of pubs, including the Lugger Inn which stands on the quayside and the Russell Arms, both serve excelllent food. Polruan also has a cafe, a small shop with a Post Office and one or two other shops selling craft goods.

A passenger ferry operates between Polruan and Fowey, the journey takes around 5 - 10 minutes.

The well preserved block house, which stands on the banks of the River Fowey, was built in the fifteenth century to prevent access to the river and harbour after the invasion of Fowey by the French. Another blockhouse is situated on the Fowey side of the river. A chain was hoisted between them at times of danger to prevent the threat of further invasion.

A solitary wooden cross stands sentinel on the rocks at the eastern side of the entrance to Fowey Harbour, the cross was mentioned in 1525 by Leland and is marked on early charts. There are several theories surrounding it but the most widely accepted is that it originally marked the limit of jurisdiction of the Prior of Tywardreath, which included the harbour. Legend states the cross is associated with Pontious Pilate as well as Joseph of Arimethea, whom, it is claimed, travelled to Cornwall way with the young Jesus to inspect his tin mines!

Ferryside was from 1927, the du Maurier family home, from where the famous authoress Daphne du Maurier wrote her first book 'The Loving Spirit' in 1928-9. It was also where she met her future husband Boy Browning, whom she married in 1932. The house is still occupied by Daphne du Maurier's son and grandchildren

.A stunning coastal cliffside garden, Headland Garden at Polruan overlooks the English Channel and offers spectacular views over the Fowey estuary.

St. Saviour's Chapel

St Saviours Chapel, which dates from the eighth century, occupies a Polruan Hill which overlooks the village. Legend relates that St. Ruan, a missionary Bishop from Ireland, was the first to occupy the summit of the hill.


The chapel was enlarged by Sir Richard Edgcumbe in 1488, to give thanks for the safe return of his ships after their voyage to Ireland to administer the oath of allegiance to the Irish Earls, as commanded by King Henry VII.

It once served as a prominent landmark for sailors marking the entrance to the harbour. At night a beacon was lit in the tower. It also was a useful lookout point giving notice of approaching enemy ships.

A walk from Polruan to Lanteglos Church

Distance- Around 3 miles

Duration- Around one and a half hours

*Commencing at the quayside at Polruan, proceed eastwards along the street which runs parallel with the shore until reaching a signed footpath leading to "The Hills".

*Follow the footpath, ascending some steps on the right and climb steeply to take in the excellent views of the River Fowey on your left.

*Continue along the footpath, passing through woodland, upon arriving at a track, turn right for a few yards before following the continuation of the footpath on the left.

* Proceed along this footpath, keeping to the upper path until reaching a road. Turn left, keeping to your right and follow along this path as it climbs steeply down to the head of a stream before reaching the road again.

*Take the turn left along a lane and proceed along the track on the right. Follow this path, which climbs steeply to arrive at Lanteglos-by-Fowey church.

*Retrace your steps to return to Polruan.