Charlestown is a beautiful, romantic unspoiled example of a late Georgian working port. Constructed between 1791 and 1801 by Charles Rashleigh. Originally built to export copper and import coal, it was not long before it was being used for the export of China Clay.
Charlestown used to be known as West Polmear and had a population of just 9 people and a small fishing fleet. The beach was used as a harbour. Charles began his project with the construction of a pier to provide shelter for the fishing fleet and then cut out of the bedrock to creation a basin to allow the sailing ships in.
By the 19th Century businesses sprang up in sheds and warehouses around the harbour and the population exploded to close on 3,000.
More people meant more properties Georgian houses and fisherman’s cottages sprang up in the village.
All these years on and the port remains unspoiled and retains much of its Georgian character. This has lead to Charlestown being a popular location for film and television locations. Poldark, Hornblower, Mansfield Park have all been filmed here
Charlestown has a fleet of square riggers ships. There is usually one of these magnificent ships in the harbour and they are well worth a look at .
There are a lot of craft/art shops, places to eat and the Shipwreck, Rescue and Heritage Centre, which contains a number of exhibits relating to Charlestown’s maritime past along with more general shipwreck salvage from Cornwall’s coast and some pieces from the Titanic.
I love this place, it really is a step back in time and so romantic.
see the photos here