Chris Wormald – A Photographer's travel blog.

Cornish Waters part two


Roseland lies to the East of the wide, 10 mile long estuary that links  Falmouth Bay upriver to Truro, changing it’s name as it heads inland from the deep Carrick Roads to the tidal Truro River which splits into the even more tidal River Fal that continues navigable as far as Tresillian.

St Mawes1, Cornwall, UK

St Mawes harbour, morning high tide

Motorists, cyclists etc, have to choose between a winding main road from Falmouth, first to Truro and then east to turn onto a small even more winding road to the villages of Roseland, or a car ferry which cuts off quite a bit of winding but costs £8 return or £6 single.

UK, Cornwall, King Harry Ferry, b&w1

King Harry Ferry

The King Harry Ferry has made its crossing for centuries in one form or another, and is always my choice except in July and August when the wait can be annoying.

St Mawes2, Cornwall, UK

St Mawes, Roseland, Cornwall

Pedestrians and cyclists going to St. Mawes from Falmouth, have the choice of leaving the car in Falmouth and taking a frequent passenger ferry between the towns. On summer Saturdays or regatta days,  the ferry passes close to sailing dinghies and yachts frantically racing each other “around the cans”; vicarious excitement indeed for those who don’t sail and a chance to see sailing close up.

UK, Cornwall; Falmouth; Working Boats2016(1)

Falmouth Working Boats racing.

St Mawes7,  Cornwall, UK

St. Mawes, Roseland, Cornwall

Roseland, because of its remote situation, has always been considered quite special; a glance in the window of an estate agent readily confirms this (recently I saw nothing under £800K and plenty between one and £3.5 million suitable for lottery winners or fat cats with inherited wealth. When she was alive, Elizabeth the Queen Mother used to enjoy staying in St. Mawes, where her wealth was nothing unusual.

At the other end of the wealth scale, I found the £15 p.n. charge to overnight in my Wildcountry backpackers’ tent at a campsite near St. Just unusually high. I was never quite sure which was worse, the condensation that dripped from the flysheet onto my head, or the condescension mouthed by the twin-axle caravan dwellers as they passed my humble abode back to their 3 litre 4×4 towing cars.

St Mawes3, punts,  Cornwall, UK

Cornish punts, St Mawes, Cornwall.

Lamorran Gardens, St Mawes8b&w,  Cornwall, UK

Lamorran House Gardens, St. Mawes, Cornwall

St. Mawes and St Just in Roseland (another St Just is down in West Penwith, past Penzance) are both lovely, but quite different. St Mawes has a castle and a beach, shops and galleries and cafes, a pub and some expensive hotels. St Just is much smaller and has a very lovely church nestling by the creek. Both have sacred wells, as does Mylor on the west side of the Carrick Roads; evidence of settlement dating back to pre-Christian times.

St Mawes6, Victory Inn,  Cornwall, UK

St, Mawes’s pub.

St. Just in Roseland Church6b&w, Cornwall, UK

St, Just in Roseland, church.

St. Just church is on the tourist trail and the manicured churchyard must have a team of gardeners. The well spring runs down to the creek and waters a large patch of gunnera on the way. The paths are lined with expensive engraved, polished granite plaques complete with platitudes and truisms.

St. Just in Roseland Church1, Cornwall, UK

St Just in Roseland church from the creek at high tide.

St. Just in Roseland Church4, holywell, Cornwall, UK

St. Just in Roseland, sacred well.

St. Just in Roseland Church3, Cornwall, UK

St. Just in Roseland churchyard, gunnera

St. Just in Roseland, Church interior, Cornwall, UK

St. Just in Roseland, church.

St. Just in Roseland Church2, Cornwall, UK

Modern day clouties at St.Just, (a pack of luggage labels)

Uk, Cornwall, Sancreed Well, prayers&wishes1

The real thing at Sancreed Well, West Cornwall.

The sacred well at St Mawes is much more low key, hidden away by the side of “Holy Well Cottage”.

St Mawes5, Holy Well Cottage,  Cornwall, UK

Holy Well Cottage, St Mawes, Cornwall.

St Mawes4, Holy Well,  Cornwall, UK

St Mawes, Holy well.


Lord Falmouth enjoys a wonderful view of the river from Tregothnan, his mansion on the north side of the river valley. From the one time smuggler’s haunt of Tolverne, ordinary people can catch a glimpse of the house over the water.

UK, Cornwall, Tolvern, moorings,and Tregothnan1

Tolverne, moorings and a glimpse of Tregothnan.

Portscatho and Portloe fishing villages on the coast, have pubs, cafes and  beaches; well worth a visit when the wind is not from the east.

Portscatho, Cornwall,UK

Portscatho, Roseland, Cornwall

UK, Cornwall, Portloe,

Portloe, Roseland, Cornwall

Brace yourself for a long drive back to Truro or hope the ferry is still running, don’t leave it too late, the hotels in Roseland are not cheap.


All welcome at St. Mawes.

St Mawes8,  Cornwall, UK

St Anthony Lighthouse, Roseland, from a friend’s yacht.  HOME!

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