Crowns Mine, Botallack

During 1985-88  a regular column called Coast & Country, about landscape and wildlife in Cornwall, appeared in The Cornishman newspaper. In later years it appeared as Cornish Landscapes in Cornish Life magazine, and occasionally as Nature Notes in  the Western Morning News.  I still groan at the vivid originality of these headings. The Cornishman column  appeared weekly; it ran for over two years. Each column was relevant to the week of publication and, unsurprisingly, West Cornwall’s fickle and often fabulous weather featured largely. Thus, these pieces are also an anecdotal record of changing weather during the mid 1980s. Some of the pieces have appeared in other publications including the book, Impressions of a Landscape, (St Ives Press & Publishing company, 1989) and Home Ground, a book and CD published by Andrew Lanyon. Every couple of weeks, within this website’s Cornwall page, one of the original columns will be featured along with a present day comment or update. Thirty years between; a mere blink for the cliffs, the moors, fields and woods of the peninsula. Some bits may have fallen off – and not just from the coast and country…

  • MOUSEHOLE-LAMORNA COAST PATH, WEST CORNWALL FEB 1985/2017 24-02-2017 - First published: The Cornishman 21.2.1985 Kemyel Crease wood FEBRUARY 1985 The five-acre wood known as Kemyel Crease is a distinctive feature on the coast path between Mousehole and Lamorna .  Last week, in strong southeasterly winds and with a hint of snow in the air the trees at Kemyel gave welcome shelter. The wood is said […]
  • THE ICEMAN FAILED TO COMETH… 18-01-2017 -  BOSIGRAN, CARN GALVER & COMMANDO RIDGE, WEST CORNWALL January 1987: In the wake of last week’s blizzards, the moors above Madron and the coastland to the north looked more like Dartmoor under snow than  mild-mannered  West Cornwall. By Friday, the snow lay in deep drifts against banks and hedges. The condition of the footpaths that […]
  • BOTALLACK: WEST CORNWALL July 1986/2016 16-07-2016 - First published: The Cornishman, 10.7.1986 The mining coast from Carn Vellan to Kenidjack Castle is cross-grained to the north west where the cliffs are cut off at the sea’s edge in shattered breaks. The cliffs rise in steps from the shoreline; their faces are sheared like coal seams. Where zawns penetrate the coastline, they are […]
  • PENDEEN WATCH: MAY 1986/2016 01-06-2016 - First published: The Cornishman, 28.5.1986 The cliffs that lie below and to the west of Pendeen lighthouse in West Cornwall are composed of ancient ‘country’ rock that was crushed and cleaved by powerful earth movements millions of years ago. It was then baked by molten granite that welled up from deep below ground. Hard treatment […]
  • LAMORNA: TATER-DU April 1985/2016 12-04-2016 - First published: The Cornishman, 4.4.1985 The mile or so of coast between Carn Barges and Boscawen Point, west of Lamorna, has more than its share of wrecks and writers. Romantic fancy may be tempted to grant the black cliffs at Tater-du a strange magnetism; inspirational for the writer certainly, but fatal for the seagoer. The […]
  • ZENNOR: HALLDRINE: February 1986/2016 09-02-2016 - (First published: The Cornishman, 6.2.1986) Halldrine Cove lies just north of Bosigran Cliff in Zennor parish. Few people go there, other than rod-fishermen, rock climbers, and random wanderers. Halldrine is remote and beautiful, if you’re content with a chaos of rock rather than a golden beach. The east and south walls of the cove are […]
  • PEDN-MÊN-AN-MERE: PORTH CHAPEL/ST LEVAN: JANUARY 1986 15-01-2016 - (First published: The Cornishman, 12.1.1986) On Christmas Day (1986)over half an inch of rain was recorded at Gwennap Head, on Penwith’s south coast. A few degrees less and we might well have had a seasonal white Christmas.  As it was, between Christmas and New Year, at least one day of glorious sunshine revealed a pale […]
  • MULFRA HILL, NEWMILL: December 1985 23-12-2015 - Mulfra Quoit – after rain In the bleak midwinter, when weather forecasters enthuse over rising temperatures and mild westerly winds, you may be sure of depressions approaching Cornwall – of climate and spirit alike. Winds from the east bring little merit certainly, but by the time they reach us in the far west they are […]
  • Cape Cornwall 14-11-2015 - November 1985  (The Cornishman 14.11.1985) It was a breezy summer this year, but it takes a real winter’s storm to remind us that Cornwall is first in line for the big Atlantic depressions that track across millions of  square miles of ocean. Cape Cornwall takes the weather on the nose and in the early hours […]

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