The Tate

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I had my brother staying who had just sailed 3,000 miles single handed across the Atlantic in a 12 metre. He is married to an artist and was very keen to see the Tate St. Ives.

We arrived at opening time of 10 a.m. & had the gallery almost to ourselves. The views from the Gallery are stunning, over the beach & out tothe Atlantic sea on a hot sunny morning. It was a joy to watch others at play & see the Lifeguards watching.

The Gallery was opened in June 1993, its aim being to celebrate the history & legacy of the artists who settled in the town. Now 21 years later it is a huge success. In August on Wednesdays only they put on Free stories in the atmospheric Loggia space for magical tales and legends of the sea. Families are encouraged with a summer exhibition I Spy Tate, to take part in Sculpture or get inspired to create by exploring the local beach. Under 18's enjoy free entry all year round.

Immediately outside the Gallery is a delightful cafe, Porthmeor Cafe with attractive young students waitressing & a glorious view over the beach & sea beyond. There is a huge choice of goodies for breakfast from buttermilk pancakes, banana, whipped pecan butter, maple syrup to a tasty cappuccino.

After walking round the harbour, dodging the crowds, we watched the Lifeboat being towed over the sand on a sea tractor & up the slipway. We thought of the dreadful story of a Lifeboat capsizing in February 1938, when 32 men were flung into a raging sea and there were fatalities amongst the ship's crew. How cruel the sea can be, but it was deceptively calm for us.

We got back to the carpark to find our car covered in seagull droppings. Then tried to find the Porthminster Cafe, recently written up and very popular but parking is obviously a huge problem & there was nowhere we could park. The railway station is recommended to walk from there but that was full or spaces reserved for rail passengers only. So we had to cancel our hard earned table & head off to St. Michael's Mount where we found a very pleasant Godolphin Arms overlooking this amazing island with its castle on top. The seafood platter was huge with whitebait, calamari and cod coujons. Delicious. A double icecream rounded off the meal nicely.

We just felt there were too many people everywhere. This is a problem with popular resorts in the summer, especially with the unexpected heatwave.

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