A mega post as I enter Cornwall in mid-July for the first of ten (10) ticks on the way to GBG glory.

The Scillies apart, Cornwall isn’t as tricky as Devon to complete; fewer Guide entries, fewer high edges, less chance of a pub run by an octogenarian being unexpectedly shut on Thursday*.

And it is gorgeous, the GBG leading you to some wonderful pubs and beaches like Finnygook, just west of the refined National Trust properties across the Tamar.

I’d never heard of Finnygook Beach, or Portwinkle, or Crafthole (home to the GBG pub), but luckily millions have been spent on interactive tourist information “pods”.

Most of the attractions involve go-carting, cider, and looking at owls, all of which are technically immoral.

I suspect that due to The Covid the leaflets hadn’t been updated since 2019, same as this gig poster, and coincidentally a major fire at the Finnygook.

Plenty of time to walk down to the beach past the golf club with its warnings of dire consequences if you got in the way of Bert’s tee shots.

It’s all happening in Portwrinkle, as they say in Saltash.

NB : The red dashes are the new UK/French border post Brexit.

Must get some strong winds down here, judging by the angle on that tree and signpost. An adventurer will ALWAYS head for anywhere which says “CAUTION : UNSTABLE“.

Finnygook isn’t pretty, and it stinks, but it has character,

and nice flowers, so that’s OK.

Most visitors were walking dogs, and the only facility was a cafe with ambitiously priced snacks (£3.40 for a coffee in a paper cup). The soundtrack was a succession of sonic booms, which coupled with my mobile phone temporarily entering a different time zone, almost persuaded me that Kernow had indeed pulled up the drawbridge and left the rest of the UK.

Back up the hill, a gaggle of retired ladies were standing at the door at noon, but reluctant to actually try it. Being the Alpha Male I am, I showed them how to open the door (normally the cue for it to be shut) and surged to the bar.

There’s a theme emerging here.

Standard Cornish dining pub with “Islands in the Stream” playing,

tremendously friendly staff, great views over to the Tamar.

I have a confession to make. The Tribute, which started off a cool NBSS 3+, deteriorated so rapidly outside I had to ditch it, picking on an innocent looking plant that was so dry the beer seeped through the bottom, possibly drowning half of Crafthole (pop. 384).

But the pub is great, particularly the Gents with its football tat and tribute to John Matthews, the Ian Clarkson of the ’70s.

I suspect the Covid memorabilia will still be there in 2042.

*I do hope I’ve got my “less” and “fewer” the right way round.


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