Fowey is the toast of yachtsmen and ramblers, but also of historians and archaeologists.
Iron Age Man lived here. The Romans found it already a port. In 1380 the Spanish, and in 1457 the French, tried to raze it to the ground. Drake, Raleigh and Frobisher all sailed from Fowey, whose harbour was surveyed by Cook before he became Captain. Here, Charles I was shot at and Queen Victoria welcomed; here, Kenneth Grahame and Daphne du Maurier found literary inspiration and the Treffry family planned their pioneering role in the Industrial Revolution.
A natural place, then, for a museum. It has a sympathetic setting in the oldest part of the Town - in a room which served as a council chamber when Fowey was a borough in its own right.
With the civic regalia on display is the mayoral chain made for the former Lord Mayor of London, Sir Charles Hanson, in his role as Lord High Sheriff of the City of London. It stands proud among artefacts and memorabilia of the many who have enriched Fowey with art, craft or government, industrial skill or naval reputation.
Complementing them is the hardware of Fowey's seafaring celebrity: the timber, sails and cordage from ships that chased the Spanish, beat the French and carried Cornish tin and China Clay all over the world.
Together, they form a compelling backdrop for special events - like the 1995exhibition of famous local authors - which bring cultural pilgrims to join the holidaymakers drawn by the magnet of Fowey's narrow, atmospheric streets and lovely estuary setting.
FOWEY MUSEUM TRUST
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