Crantock, Newquay

A peaceful and pretty village that can be accessed via the coastal footpath across the Gannel River, or at high tide from Whitsun until mid-September via a little passenger ferry that will take you across to the Crantock side of the Gannel from the Fern Pit Cafe in Riverside Crescent. Alternatively there is a regular bus between Newquay and Crantock.

Ken Langmaid a Newquay born resident wrote:

Old Albion Pub Crantock by Keith Riley
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Old Albion Pub Crantock by Keith Riley

This is the prettiest village in the neighbourhood of Newquay. In spite of its close proximity to Cornwall’s biggest holiday resort, its physical separation is ensured by the gorge of the Gannel and it retains a gratifying charm and peacefulness.

Crantock can be reached from Newquay by a roundabout road trip or by a short cut across the Gannel (footbridge at low tide. Ferry at Fernpit. The village consists of some picturesque cottages, whitewashed and thatched , a couple of pubs), a few little shops and chapels, a village green with the nearby Well of St.Carantocus and a church of great historic interest and unusual beauty.

Crantock by Keith Riley
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Crantock by Keith Riley

In the church yard is an ancient stone coffin and behind the church a famous set of stocks. For the interested in such things Crantock is the setting of many old stories and legends – smugglers, buried items etc. Crantock Common is a sweet scented area of sandy turf, sloping down towards Crantock beach. In 1973 I found a few plants of Pink Mountain Everlasting on the common, just above the National Trust car-park. Charles Woolf expressed doubt – when I described the plants. However he did eventually agree to accompany me to the site and was astonished to find my identification to be correct. In 1974 he wrote me a letter saying he had photographed and recorded the Mountain Everlasting.

The centre of Crantock village consists of a circular enclosure with a tall hedge, overgrown and hardly noticeable, as cars and buses manoeuvre around the area.

I have to confess that all my life I have paid no attention to it,until in 1998 when I learned it had a name – The Round Garden or The Round Orchard and is supposed by some to be the site of the first oratory built by St.Carantocus. It now belongs to the National Trust and has a few trees growing in the enclosure.