Peninnis Head

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Article By: Dan Hill
a month ago
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Nature-Island Nature-Ocean Nature-Rock formation Nature-View point

Peninnis Head is the most southerly point on St. Mary's island. A visit here rewards with sea views across to the island of St. Agnes, highly unusual granite rock formations jutting out from the sea and giant piles of boulders balancing on top of each other - begging you to take a photo. Weather permitting, the headland at Peninnis Head makes an ideal spot for a picnic - especially if you've just arrived on the ferry. Across the grassy slopes grow heathers and gorse. Standing proudly on Peninnis Head, overlooking the Celtic Sea, is Peninnis Lighthouse - built in 1911 by Trinity House. Lying next to it is a boxy white building that originally bore the tanks of acetylene fuel that were used to illuminate the lighthouse. Interestingly, it was as late as 1992 before the miracle of electric light finally reached this lighthouse. The lighthouse was built to replace the previous lighthouse from 1680 that lay in the centre of the island of St. Agnes. Its light guides sea vessels down the St. Mary's Sound toward the harbour at Hugh Town. A Radio Direction Finding Station (RDF) was erected on Peninnis head to during World War II in order to detect incoming Nazi aircraft. First attacked in August 1940, it took another year of attempted bombings before the Nazis finally destroyed it. Designated an Area of Outstanding National Beauty (AONB), a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and a Geological Conservation Review site, the Hercynian granite here has been sculpted by the weather to produce works worthy of Barbara Hepworth.
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  • Peninnis Head, St. Mary's, Isles of Scilly TR21 0PP, UK
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  • Tags
    Family friendly
    Hidden gem
    Tourist must-do

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