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Massive rock arch demolished by sea at Porthcothan Bay as storm waves hit Cornwall

By Western Daily Press  |  Posted: January 06, 2014

  • The arch at Porthcothan Bay after it was hit by the 30ft waves that smashed into the Cornwall coast near Newquay

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An iconic natural rock arch a fewe miles north of Newquay has been demolished by massive 30ft waves hitting the coast of Cornwall.

Porthcothan Bay is famed for its picture-postcard beach and caves, including a massive stone arch. But the ferocious storms battered the beloved landmark and it collapsed into the sea.

The outcrop once resembled a giant rocky doughnut - but it now looks like someone has taken a huge bite out of it.

Locals say their idyllic beach, nestled between Newquay and Padstow on the North Cornwall coast, will never be the same.

Porthcothan Bay was one of numerous Cornish harbours and coastal towns lashed by 30ft waves and 70mph winds over the weekend as Britain was hit by its worst storms in 20 years.

Resident Tamsin Swindells, 39, said locals were devastated by the loss of the stone archway, knows locally as The Anchor or Jan Leverton's Rock.

She said: "People used to climb up it and jump off the archway in the summer.

"It was probably going to collapse eventually because of erosion but the waves were immense over the weekend and they've brought the whole thing crashing down in one go.

"It's just a pile of rocky rubble now - it looks like a demolition site. The beach just won't be the same without it; it's completely changed.

"It's a real shame but the cliff-face is the ultimate canvas for Mother Nature and she'll no doubt carve all kinds of arches and shapes in the future."

Other fans of the beach took to Facebook to express their sadness. Cynthia Swindells said: "We were there, what a mess, met some people who thought it had another 10 years before that happened."

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  • Rustyjob  |  January 07 2014, 10:15PM

    No this is the new gap- you used to be able to scramble up the flat surface onto the headland. Fond memories of childhood hols in the 70s and 80s here... Amazing!

  • ukboy76  |  January 07 2014, 12:19PM

    You've highlighted the wrong gap - the new gap is just to the right of your circle - the one you have highlighted is quite clearly already there in the before pic.