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to Polruan


Looking towards Polperro

The harbour and village of Polperro are situated in an Area Of Out standing Natural Beauty; an area of Heritage Coast, and were one of the first designated Conservation Areas in South East Cornwall.

In March 1998 the coast line to the West, from Polperro to Polruan was designated a Site Of Special Scientific Interest ( SSSI ). This new area incorporates the already designated Polperro West Cliffs SSSI. The citation is extensive and comprehensive, including a listing of the rock formations and structures, an impressive listing of rare and important flora and fauna, some of which are listed in the Red Data Book.

European Habitats Directive, Special Areas of Conservation (SAC’s).
Following consultation with all interested parties by English Nature, on January 29 th 2001 the Polperro to Polruan SSSI has been nominated by the government for inclusion on a list of candidates for Special Areas of Conservation and sent to the European Commission for their consideration

It has been recommended as a candidate SAC because it contains habitat types and/or species which are rare or threatened within a European context. The interest’s submitted to the European Commission are :-

European Dry Heaths, for which the area is considered to support a significant presence. They are dominated by dwarf shrubs of the heather family.

Shore Dock , for which the area is considered to be one of the best areas in the UK. This is thought to be the world’s rarest dock and one of the rarest plants in Europe. In the UK it is found only on a small number of sites in south west England and Wales.

Vegetated Sea Cliffs of the Atlantic and Baltic coasts, for which this is considered to be one of the best areas in the UK. These are sea cliffs that are partially covered by vegetation, the nature of which varies considerably depending on cliff geology, erosion, geographical location, and the degree of exposure to wind and salt spray. Plant species vary but may include rock sea-spurrey, thrift and rock samphire.

On the 1 st April 2005, this application was approved and granted SAC status, and was entered in the Register of European Sites for Great Britain on the 14 th June 2005, reference number UK0030241.

The citation states that rock crevice and ledge communities are characterised by a sparse vegetation cover of Thrift, English Stonecrop, Wild Carrot, Rock Samphire, Sea Campion, Tree Mallow and Wild Cabbage. The maritime grasslands include Wild Thyme, Common Restharrow, Sheep’s-bit, Bluebell, Salad Burnet, Slender Bird’s-foot Trefoil, Hairy Bird’s-foot Trefoil, Autumn Lady’s Tresses, and Early Purple Orchid. Areas of heath vegetation are present, characterised by Western Gorse, Bell Heather, and Shore Dock.

August 2005

   Stormwater    outlet
    the way
   Looking    towards    Polruan