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Coordinates: 50°01′N 5°06′W / 50.017°N 5.100°W / 50.017; -5.100

Coverack Old Lifeboat Station and Harbour Wall

Coverack (Cornish: Porthkovrek,[1] meaning cove of the stream) is a coastal village and fishing port in Cornwall, UK. It lies in the parish of St Keverne, on the east side of the Lizard peninsula about nine miles (14 km) south of Falmouth.[2]

Coverack has several hotels and a youth hostel.[3] The area is a centre for watersports, particularly wind surfing, sailing and diving. The nearby rocks known as the Manacles have been the site of many shipwrecks and as a consequence are now a favourite diving destination.


Near the South West Coast Path is Poldowrian Garden which includes a prehistoric settlement discovered in 1965, dated by archaeologists at 5500 BC. Finds from the site are available for viewing.[4] The roads to Coverack cross Goonhilly Downs (famous for the BT satellite earth station).

"Coverack Cove and Dolor Point" SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) is one of the most famous geological localities in Cornwall, providing an almost continuous section across a mantle-crust boundary.[5] Other nearby SSSI are Coverack to Porthoustock and Kennack to Coverack.

Coverack beach. The boats in the harbour can be seen in the background (2017).
Coverack harbour (2017)

Coverack lies within the Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).


St Peter's Church[edit]

St Peter's was consecreted on 20 August 1885 by the Bishop of Truro. The chuch overlooks the cove on land donated by Mr Trevennen and cost £500. Built in the Early English style, the footings are in local granite, the walls of red, Bridgewater brick, with the dressings of Breage grantite.[6] The village hall was built in 1885.[7]

Coverack lifeboat[edit]

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) stationed a lifeboat at Coverack in 1901 following the wreck of the SS Mohegan on The Manacles in 1898 with the loss of more than 100 lives. A boat house with a slipway was built on the harbour. The all-weather lifeboat was withdrawn in May 1972 and replaced by a D-class inshore inflatable. The station was closed completely in October 1978 following the allocation of a faster boat to Falmouth Lifeboat Station.[8]

A coxswain of the Coverack lifeboat, Archie Rowe, was a subject of This Is Your Life in 1958 when he was surprised by Eamonn Andrews at the BBC Television Theatre.

The following lifeboats were stationed at Coverack:

Dates in service Class ON Op. No. Name Comments
1901–1934 35 ft Liverpool ON 458 Constance Melanie Pulling and sailing boat
1934–1954 35 ft 6in Liverpool Single engine ON 771 The Three Sisters Reported working as a pleasure boat at Rhyl in 2007.[9]
1954–1972 42ft Watson ON 907 William Taylor of Oldham Reported working as a fishing boat named Gipsy Moth in Petit Martinique.[10]
1972–1978 D-class (RFD PB16) D-166 Unnamed Inshore lifeboat.[8]

Christmas swim[edit]

Every year on Christmas Day, all the local villagers and many holiday makers turn out to watch volunteers go swimming in the harbour in aid of charity. This tradition has gone on for nearly 50 years and has raised thousands of pounds for Cancer Research.[citation needed]

July 2017 flash flood[edit]

On 18 July 2017 the village was hit by a flash flood.[11] It was reported that roads were blocked and hailstones the size of 50 pence pieces (30 mm) smashed windows. Heavy rainfall hit at about 15:00 BST and the coastguard was needed to airlift two people who were trapped on the roof of a house.


  1. ^ Place-names in the Standard Written Form (SWF) Archived 15 May 2013 at the Wayback Machine : List of place-names agreed by the MAGA Signage Panel Archived 15 May 2013 at the Wayback Machine. Cornish Language Partnership.
  2. ^ Ordnance Survey: Landranger map sheet 204 Truro & Falmouth ISBN 978-0-319-23149-4
  3. ^ A magnificent staircase salvaged from the wreck of the SS Mohegan on The Manacles stands in Coverack youth hostel, at Parc Behan, School Hill, Coverack.
  4. ^ "Poldowrian Garden". Gardens of Cornwall. Retrieved 21 April 2010.
  5. ^ "Coverack Cove and Dolor Point" (PDF). Natural England. 1992. Retrieved 26 October 2011.
  6. ^ "Consecration of a Church and Burial-ground at Coverack". The Cornishman (371). 27 August 1885. p. 5.
  7. ^ "St Peter". National Church Trust. Explore Churches. Retrieved 10 March 2021.
  8. ^ a b Leach, Nicholas (2006) [2000]. Cornwall's Lifeboat Heritage. Chacewater: Twelveheads Press. p. 38. ISBN 0-906294-43-6.
  9. ^ Denton, Tony (2009). Handbook 2009. Shrewsbury: Lifeboat Enthusiasts Society. pp. 16–17.
  10. ^ Denton, Tony (2009). Handbook 2009. Shrewsbury: Lifeboat Enthusiasts Society. pp. 22–23.
  11. ^ "Flash flood sweeps through Coverack in Cornwall". BBC. 18 July 2017. Retrieved 18 July 2017.

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