Traffic trouble as Porthleven sees crowds descend for Saturday storm watching

This tongue in cheeky sign shows Porthleven residents have not lost their sense of humour

This tongue in cheeky sign shows Porthleven residents have not lost their sense of humour

First published in Cornwall
Last updated

With Porthleven the focus for local, national and international media after savage storm damage, and its fame as a 'storm watching' spot, the town was overwhelmed with crowds on Saturday.

Cllr Andrew Wallis said that 'hundreds upon hundreds of people came' to catch a glimpse of the drama, leading to closed roads, traffic and parking problems.

Mr Wallis said: "When weather forecasters predicts another mother-of-all storm, the scene is set for people wanting to see how it plays out first hand or via the media.

"On Friday night the wind steadily got stronger and stronger and continued into Saturday. With high-water set for 11:24 am, the timings of everything happening was ideal for those who wished to watch the sheer power of the sea pound Porthleven.

Thankfully Saturday’s high-water was a good metre and a half lower than the tide which do so much damage on Wednesday. It might not sound much, but believe me it is when you add in very strong winds and large waves you do not want a spring-tide.

Mr Wallis added: "It was not just the public who came to watch the seas as you could almost trip over the number of film crews filming. At one stage a helicopter – with camera ball – was flying low-level around Porthleven.

"With the large numbers of people who travelled to Porthleven, it was hardly surprising the road network would struggle; especially as the Porthleven Road is closed due to major repairs. This resulted in the Police restricting access to Porthleven for a period of time due to the numbers of vehicles trying to get in and out of Porthleven.

"For safety reasons, the Police and Coastguards stopped access to some of the more exposed roads in Porthleven. Safety while watching the waves is paramount. Most people understood the danger of the sea and the power of those huge waves and acted accordingly.

Adding however that some people decided to take unnecessary risks to get that ‘perfect picture.’ 

Mr Wallis said that the best picture I took of the day was of a local resident; who with a great sense of humour was holding up a sign in reference to the parking problems that had arisen due to the numbers of people visiting Porthleven, and trying to find somewhere to park. It really made me smile."

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