The port of Fowey made its first shipment of china clay in 1869 when the railway lines were used to bring in locally mined china clay. In the same year, the Fowey jetties were built and operated by the railway companies and the Fowey Harbour Commissioners were formed to become the port authority to oversee these operations.

The Harbour Commissioner’s stewardship of the Fowey Estuary begins at Lostwithiel Bridge at the head of the estuary and ends at the river mouth, between Punches Cross in Polruan and St Catherine’s Castle in Fowey. This 11km stretch of river is home to a diversity of wildlife and habitats and is used by both commercial and leisure industries.

The Fowey Harbour Office on Albert Quay, Fowey is the public face of the organisation and under the leadership of the Harbour Master, a team of nearly 30 staff carry out the numerous and varied services the Commissioners provide. From towing ships, maintaining moorings and dredging the harbour to maintain its depth right through to berthing leisure craft, the Fowey Harbour Commissioners own and operate a variety of vessels and facilities to enable these activities.

In the 150 years since its formation, the Board of Commissioners has been dedicated to protecting the harbour’s environment while supporting, facilitating and promoting the many businesses, groups and individuals, whose livelihoods depend upon it. Fowey Harbour is a Trust Port which means that any financial surpluses from commercial projects are reinvested straight back into the harbour to benefit all those who operate along and enjoy the river.

To celebrate this milestone, the Fowey Harbour Commissioners have worked with local author Emma Mansfield to create a book to celebrate the Fowey River. If you haven’t got your copy yet, then make sure you do! It is available from the Harbour Office as well as other stockists in the town and at £9.95, it’s a great souvenir or present.