St Ives Harbour
Welcome to St Ives Harbour
St Ives Harbour located on the north coast is a tidal harbour with three piers – Smeaton’s Pier, West Pier and New Pier together with two lighthouses on Smeaton’s Pier. It is a statutory harbour authority and has Harbour Orders dated between 1853 and 1993.
St Ives Harbour has a hand line mackerel fishing fleet together with leisure moorings, passenger tripping boats and hire craft. There are approximately 140 tidal moorings in the harbour.
St Ives was the largest fishing port in Penwith by 1337 and gained a weekly market during the 15th century. It was made a borough in c1500. In the 16th century it was the chief port of departure in the west for passage to Ireland.
Smeaton’s Pier was built between 1767 and 1770 and was intended principally to be a breakwater. Smeaton’s plans were altered in order to give a vertical inner side to the pier so that boats could lie alongside
The first lighthouse made of granite was built in 1831.
In 1847 it was reported that there were over 400 boats and 735 men employed in the pilchard fisheries.
The Pier was extended between 1888 and 1890 with the foundation stone being laid on 25 June 1888. This included the building of ‘The Arches’ which was intended to aid the sluicing of the sand. Unfortunately this proved to be too effective as boats as well as sand was sluiced from the harbour. Baulks of timber were then put in place, removable by crane on tracks above.
A cast iron second lighthouse made of cast iron also being built at the end of the extension which now gave a total length of quay of 600 feet.
West Pier was built in 1894 as a private venture for loading roadstone from greenstone quarries at Orange Lane and Carthew. In the 1920’s a crane was installed near the landing steps and removed in 1986.
The new Lifeboat House and slipway was built between 1993 and 1994 to accommodate the new ‘Mersey’ class lifeboat and to house the Inshore Lifeboat in the same boathouse.
Photo credits – Droneman / Channel Images / WT Collard