Pentire Head

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Pentire Head
Pentire Point.JPG
View of Pentire Point taken from Polzeath
Map showing the location of Pentire Head
Map showing the location of Pentire Head
Location in Cornwall
Coordinates50°35′02″N 4°55′08″W / 50.584°N 4.919°W / 50.584; -4.919Coordinates: 50°35′02″N 4°55′08″W / 50.584°N 4.919°W / 50.584; -4.919

Pentire Head (Cornish: Penn Tir, meaning "headland")[1] is a headland and peninsula on the Atlantic coast in North Cornwall, England, and is about one mile square. The headland projects north-west with Pentire Point at its north-west corner and The Rumps promontory at its north-east corner.[2]


The origin of the name is from Cornish penn (head) and tir (land): another headland with the name Pentire is further west near Crantock.


Sketch map showing Pentire Head and the surrounding area

Pentire Point and Stepper Point stand at either side of the mouth of the River Camel estuary (Pentire to the north-east, Stepper to the south-west). To the south of Pentire Point is the small seaside resort of Polzeath. The coastline around the headland is owned by the National Trust, although the bulk of the headland itself is let to Pentire Farm.

The Rumps promontory is the site of Iron Age clifftop fortifications - the series of mound and ditch earthworks remain clearly visible today.

The entire headland forms the Pentire Peninsula Site of Special Scientific Interest, designated for its geology and flora and fauna including nationally rare plants. Important examples noted include slates from the Upper Devonian period, several invertebrate species, predatory birds and grey seals.[3]

A small island named Puffin island lies about one mile (1,600 metres) to the north-west of Pentire Point. Another small island named The Mouls lies 300 yards to the north-east of The Rumps and supports colonies of seabirds. Beyond The Rumps, the coastline veers southeast into Port Quin Bay.

The South West Coast Path closely follows the coastline of the headland, and sightseeing boat tours regularly travel along the coast from the nearby port of Padstow.

For The Fallen[edit]

The plaque commemorating Laurence Binyon with The Rumps promontory beyond

The poet Laurence Binyon wrote "For the Fallen" (first published in The Times in September 1914) while sitting by the cliffs between Pentire Point and The Rumps. A stone plaque was erected in 2001 to commemorate the fact and bears the inscription

For The Fallen
Composed on these cliffs 1914

The plaque also bears the fourth stanza of the poem:

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them

Gallery of images[edit]


  1. ^ Place-names in the Standard Written Form (SWF) : List of place-names agreed by the MAGA Signage Panel. Cornish Language Partnership.
  2. ^ Ordnance Survey: Landranger map sheet 200 Newquay & Bodmin ISBN 978-0-319-22938-5
  3. ^ "Pentire Peninsula" (PDF). Natural England. 17 September 1986. Retrieved 25 October 2011.

External links[edit]