Valentine’s Day Storm hits Porthleven

With each storm that hits Porthleven, the intensity of the weather is off the scale. The Valentines Day storm is the most powerful – so far – to hit. It was not just the monster sea, but wind so strong it tried to knock you off your feet.  You could not help watch in awe of the savagery of the waves as they crash ashore.

The weather forecaster had predicted heavy rain, but luckily did not materialise. A good job really, as that would have made things in Porthleven very difficult. For a precaution to the heavy rainfall, I requested a delivery of 50 sandbags to the area in Porthleven most at risk from flooding. There was also a further 800 sandbags delivered to Helston Coronation car park for public use. Credit must go to Cormac who moved swiftly to deliver the sandbags.

As for the storm it was like a light being switched on, when one minute the weather went from almost benign to a deadly mass of water. This all happened an hour before high-water. Now with the seas crashing over the harbour walls, roads were shut, however, for one unlucky car, it was too late and the sea like it was a cat playing with its victim, tormented this car with wave after wave smashing into it and trying to drag the car to a watery grave.

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This was just the start of the storm, as minute by minute the intensity of the storm grew; wave after wave smashed into the harbour walls, quays, the pier and the iconic Bickford-Smith Institute building. The canons which ‘guard’ Porthleven and stand on the outer-harbour quay disappeared under the mass of water.

The outer quay and cannon engulfed

The outer quay and cannon engulfed

The now closed road which leads to the Institute was also under a mass of water as the tide surged forward. At times, the road was as one with the sea as water could not drain away before more waves crashed over the walls.


The Harbour Road


Looking back over the outer harbour

Porthleven’s pier did not escape the sea from being submerged as the next series of photos will show how the pier was lost in a mass of water. In fact it was hard to tell how big some of the waves were, as the seas were just a mass of water bubbling away in a white-mass.


The Porthleven Pier


Submerged under the waves

The main road in Porthleven runs in parallel to the head of the harbour became a sea-of-foam which was in some places, knee-deep.


It is hard to believe, but the following day, the sea had returned to an almost calm like state and the previous evening had never happened. I have to say, I have lived by the sea since I was a teenager, and have served at sea in the Royal Navy, however, I have never seen the sea ‘act’ with such intensity and savagery that I have witnessed over these last few weeks.


The following day after the storm


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