Tuesday 4th August 2015
We took a trip to Mousehole today, to see an exhibition at the Little Picture Gallery which is host to the British Association of Naive Artists. Mr RR has a couple of pictures there so we went along and saw them in place and met Judy Joel, who is the Director and Secretary and generally overseas everything. The exhibition runs until the 15th August so you still have time to get yourself there and have wee look. Then it moves off to Maker Heights in Torpoint from 21st August to 4th September (www.britishnaives.co.uk/exhibitions.html).
Anyway, we walked into Mousehole from Newlyn along the coast road. A trifle blustery but not too bad a day.
Enjoy this little ramble…
Newlyn to Mousehole and return (3 miles)
Whenever we walk into Mousehole we have a look at the cliff top allotments to see how they’re doing. Someone’s been working hard on expanding the scarecrow population:
Before we get into Mousehole itself we stop at the Rock Pool Cafe for a cuppa (we won’t talk about the orange and rosemary shortbread) and sit looking out over the rocks and sea with views of Mousehole harbour to our right.
Directly in front of us is St Clement’s Isle, lying 400 yards offshore and said to have been home to a hermit many years ago, who tended a guiding light on the isle. Mousehole was once named Porth-Enys – the Port of the Island although there are reports of the use of the name Mousehole dating back to 1242 and probably both names were used together for a while.
Opinions differ on the origins of the name Mousehole – with one explanation being that it derives from the Cornish word Moeshayle, meaning ‘at the mouth of the river of young women’ – just as intriguing! Others say that it comes from the fact that the port is the size of a mouse hole or even that there is a sea cave nearby after which it was named. We’ll never know I suppose!
Suitably refreshed we move on into Mousehole and find our way to the gallery where we spend a pleasant half hour or so before heading up the steep, steep hill which is the coast road towards Lamorna. We’re off to visit the Mousehole Wild Bird Hospital and Sanctuary (www.mouseholebirdhospital.org.uk/).
The Cry of a Bird is the story of how the Wild Bird’s Hospital was started over 80 years ago when the Yglesias sisters, Dorothy and Phyllis (Pog) treated a jackdaw that their sister Mary had found in a drainpipe. Since that time the hospital has admitted around 1000 birds a year and released many of them back into the wild.
Today there are pigeons, jackdaws, magpies and crows in residence as well as the ever present gulls. In 2014 307 herring gull fledglings were admitted, unsurprisingly as these birds seem incapable of judging when they might be able to fly and are constantly falling out of their nests. We had one in the driveway just last week hopping frantically about while it’s parents squawked feverishly overhead.
Alongside the gulls today is a black backed gull, an enormous bird when seen beside other gulls. This one had gathered a beakful of leaves and feathers and seemed confused about what to do with them. Maybe he was just tidying up the place and looking for the bin, or perhaps he was trying to get on with his nest building:
There’s a little visitor centre now too, where you can learn all about the history of the hospital, buy souvenirs, and see some examples of Pog’s work – she was a sculptor and artist when she wasn’t rescuing birds.
Leaving the sanctuary, we head back down the hill, admiring the views of the harbour and St Micheal’s Mount in the distance:
and then back along the coast road towards Newlyn.
Total Miles walked this year – 516