Wherever you look in Hayle you will discover a wealth of buildings and landmarks that provide an insight into the town’s history as a port and mining centre/ centre of engineering excellence. Surrounding this is an incredible landscape – the Hayle Estuary so rich in birdlife that it is owned and cared for by the RSPB, the sand dunes where more than a fifth of all the county’s wild flowers can be found and of course the 3 miles of sands and sea – a natural adventure playground.
The town has two main centres joined by a road that runs alongside Copperhouse Pool, an area rich in birds and wildlife.The south western end centred around Foundry Square with the spectacular viaduct bridging the Estuary, was once owned by Harvey & Co – a 19th Century pioneering engineering firm known worldwide for its quality workmanship. Several buildings belonging to Harvey’s Foundry still remain, and the area has undergone a massive regeneration project creating a modern environment that is sympathetic to its past whilst providing pleasant places for both work and play. Modern work studios and residences have been constructed using buildings that were once mills and foundries; parks and footpaths have been created where once industrial rope making took place.
The northeastern end of Hayle belonged to the Copperhouse Copper Company. This area has many dwellings built using slag bricks,- waste from the copper smelting process. The Copperhouse Pool, owned by the RSPB, a tidal pool alive in winter and summer with birds and wildlife, links the two centres of Hayle and our town trail follows the circumference of this pool. On its seaward side the King George V Memorial walk, suitable for wheelchairs and with a plethora of specially planted trees and plants, makes a lovely place for a quiet Sunday stroll, whilst the town side offers a very different, vibrant environment, full of shops and businesses selling everything from pasties to surf boards!
The Town walk which takes you along both sides of Copperhouse Pool shows how town and countryside can coexist and how the town’s industrial past can be discovered by looking a little deeper into this fascinating landscape.
Hayle has a remarkable wealth of history and wildlife to discover. As you explore the town you can use the Discovery map to find out about Hayle’s industrial heritage and how the buildings and landscape provide an insight into its industrial past. Situated on the mouth of the Hayle estuary, which is alive with thousands of birds and owned and protected by the RSPB, the town is a testament to how nature and man can coexist. However this is a fragile balance and this website aims to give a better understanding of how we can sustain Hayle’s unique environment for the future.
Use the links to look at Hayle town’s heritage; the amazing diversity of its coastline from the rolling sandhills of the Towans to the rugged cliffs of Godrevy Head and the outlying villages with their uniquely individual traits.