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Feock Trails - History Information

The Carrick Roads and creeks

Pill Creek

As you walk along the footpath high above Pill Creek, you are walking in the footsteps of artists, architects, sailors, and shipwrights who together have made this small creek a significant part of the Cornish coastline.

Pill Creek Views. Photographs by Keith Hambly-Staite

Artists such as Winifred Nicholson, Christopher Wood, Terry Frost, Ben Nicholson, and John Wells have painted or drawn pictures of the changing seasons reflected in the waters of the creek. Architects and master builders have contributed to the unique built landscape on its banks. As you look across the water you will see one of the most famous houses in England; a Grade One listed building, the first house designed by the internationally acclaimed architect by Richard Rogers in the 1960’s. On your right, as you walk along the footpath, you can see the early eighteenth century cottages built for the shipwrights who built the Fal barges, oyster dredging boats and schooners that carried copper ore to South Wales.

As you look eastwards, across the creek you will see the remains of the wharf, ship building yard and slipways used by the copper industry. Long trains of mules used to bring copper ore down from the mines in central Cornwall; latterly the wharfs were used by the owners of Trelissick House for leisure and recreation. One pair of eighteenth century houses near the wharfs was the village pub, and put to good use by the ship builders, pack horse drivers and thirsty mariners who worked in the area.

The protected nature of the creek attracts birds in the winter with several hundred black faced gulls roosting at high tide. Grey mullet are found in the summer, and oysters are farmed at the mouth of the creek running down into the Carrick Roads.

Pill Creek was both a significant area for Shipbuilding in the 19th and 20th century, as well as the Fal Oyster Fishery Trade. Why not explore these narratives too?

Pill Creek Ferry

Written by Keith Hambly-Staite


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