Yesterday’s weather turned out unexpectedly benign, so we went for a little drive and ended up at Porthleven. You can see its location marked by a blue dot on the map to the left. Porthleven is the most southerly harbour in Britain and has a small fleet of fishing craft. It was once a boat building centre too, but I don’t think that is still going on. These days the main industry is tourism and the place has a surprising number of good restaurants, as well as an art gallery and a delicatessen. The place is also a favourite for surfers.
The picture (by yours truly) shows the entrance to the harbour and the pier. This is famous for spectacular wave displays during stormy weather. The pier is quite often too dangerous to use and a red ball is hoisted on the pole at the end to warn off foolhardy visitors.
An indication of how nasty things can get in bad weather along this coast is the fact that between 1683 and 1997 there were 64 shipwrecks near Porthleven.
I am not sure, but would bet, that the local pronunciation of the name is pəθˈlevn. The first element means “cove/harbour/inlet” and the second element means “smooth”. That is a bit surprising for a place is which is decidedly rough at times, but the element is actually the name of a river.