Discover the real Rocky Horror Show this National Marine Week, 23 July – 7 August, when Cornwall Wildlife Trust celebrates our awesome sea life! Summer is simply not complete without a day at the seaside - but is life in our rockpools quite as placid as it seems?



Matt Slater, Marine Awareness officer at Cornwall Wildlife Trust says,

“Although they may look like peaceful places, rockpools are host to a wealth of marine animals all competing in a murderous underwater drama! Many creatures we are used to seeing on the shore have fascinating and often shocking life stories. Time spent watching this marine world is compelling, and occasionally gruesome, but very well spent.”

Wildlife Trusts throughout the country are taking part in National Marine Week, which is actually for two weeks during the summer holidays. Events in Cornwall include rockpool rummaging, snorkelling, stand up paddle boarding, seawatches and craft sessions. Staff and volunteers from the Trust will be on site to share their knowledge, so whether you want to find out more about the gory rituals of rockpool life or enjoy a whale and dolphin watch the opportunity is there.

Rocky shores are home to a colourful cast of characters, including air breathing fish, starfish that can re-grow their arms and stomachs; sea squirts who can digest their own brains; hermaphrodite sea hares who form mating chains; and barnacles, unable to move around to find a mate, who have the longest penis in relation to body size of any animal!

To show the public how beautiful and intriguing our rockpool life can be local film maker Tom Daguerre of Hydromotion Media CIC has teamed up with the Trust’s Matt Slater to create a series of short films made in Cornish rockpools that feature incredible creatures such as the solar powered sea slug, the squat lobster and even the newly rediscovered St Piran’s Crab. To find the films please visit

Dip into rockpools, keep an eye out for fins amongst the waves, and see what other surprises our sea might offer this summer. But be careful to leave everything as you find it, putting all creatures back into the pools where you found them, and not scraping any residents off the rocks.

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Marine week events in Cornwall:

Saturday July 23 Rummage in a rockpool near Falmouth, come on a rockpool ramble and decorate your own reusable cotton shopping bag 2.00pm – 4.00pm Booking essential contact Fox Club (01872)273939. Sponsored by South West Water.

Sunday July 24Seawatch at the Rumps near Polzeath, join experts to scan the sea for dolphins, whales, seals and seabirds. 11.00am – 1.00pm with Polzeath Marine Conservation Group. £2. Contact 07779 896650 or

Sunday July 24Public Seawatch at St Agnes headland. Cornwall Wildlife Trusts Seaquest South West. Time 11am – 1pm, meet at St Agnes NCI station. For more details contact;

Tuesday July 26Snorkel in a rockpool. Learn to snorkel in huge rockpools on Cornwall’s North coast. A beautiful and safe place for children to try snorkelling for the first time. 2.30pm – 4.00pm with Marine biologist Matt Slater Fox club - Sorry now fully booked

Wednesday July 27Carnival seaside crafty at West Looe 12noon to 2.00pm with Fox club and Looe Marine Conservation Group. Marine themed craft session for Looe Carnival. Meet at Fieldhead Hotel car park, Hannafore, West Looe. Contact (01503) 262689.

Wednesday July 27Get Crafty! Marine themed arts and crafts at Polzeath 10.30am to 12.30pm. From strandline creations to rockpool wonders. Meet at Polzeath Marine Centre, opposite pitch and putt green. SW 936 788.Bring your imagination and a parent or a guardian if under 18. For more details email;

Sunday July 31Introduction to snorkelling for beginners 10.00am to 3.00pm. Morning training and an afternoon snorkel with Abby Crosby– meeting at Cornwall Wildlife Trust HQ Allet. Booking essential email; Cost £15 per person.

Monday August 1Rockpool Ramble at Polzeath 10.00am to 12 noon with Polzeath Marine Conservation Group. Meet at Polzeath Marine Centre, Cost £2 per person, for more details email;

Wednesday August 3 Eco Stand up Paddle Boarding and Snorkelling at Mounts Bay 10.00am to 1.00pm. Join Marine officer Matt Slater and Lawrence Smith of Ocean High Stand up paddle boarding for a marine excursion with a difference! Snorkelling from stand up paddle boards in Mounts Bay Marine Conservation Zone. Cost £27. Booking essential. Contact Matt Slater;

Wednesday August 3Get Crafty! Marine themed arts and crafts at Polzeath. Polzeath Marine Centre 10.30am - 12.30 pm From strandline creations to rockpool wonders. Meet at Polzeath Marine Centre, opposite pitch and putt green. SW 936 788.Bring your imagination and a parent or a guardian if under 18. For more details email;

Thursday August 4Shore Explore, the sea caves of Whipsiderry, near Newquay. 11.00am to 2.00pm. Join Marine Officer Matt Slater for an exciting and challenging educational exploration of this very special shore. Cost £10. Booking essential. Contact Matt Slater (01872) 279393 ext 214 or email

Thursday August 4Rockpool Ramble at Polzeath 12.30pm to 2.30pm Join marine experts, Polzeath volunteers, and National Trust rangers on one of our famous explorations of the shore! Led by Cornwall Wildlife Trust’s Abby Crosby and sponsored by John Bray Associates. Meet atPolzeath Marine Centre, opposite pitch and putt green. SW 936 788. Booking essential. Contact 07779 896650 or Bring: Suitable clothing and waterproof footwear (but not crocs or flipflops). Smallbuckets are also useful.

Friday August 5Rockpool ramble, Spit Par Beach, Near Par. join marine experts on a fascinating shore exploration. 1.30pm to 3.30pm. Organised by Friends of the Fowey Estuary, Strand line Search, and Friends of Par Beach. £2.50 non-members contact Claire Hoddinott (01726) 833061.

Friday August 5Baby Lobster Release at Port Gaverne at 1.30pm. Join Polzeath Marine Conservation Group volunteers for a day of fun at the beach with the National Lobster Hatchery. It’s going to be a unique and unusual experience - releasing baby lobsters into the ocean. The natural harbour of Port Gaverne is a safe haven, allowing baby lobsters to safely reach adulthood. Get an up-close and personal look at the hatchlings as they are set free, learn about how lobsters grow, play beach games, explore the sea shore,

and celebrate our rich coastal heritage! Booking essential contact 07779 896650.

Friday August 5Rockpool Ramble, Hannafore Beach, West Looe Explore a fascinating shore teeming with marine life Time 1.45pm to 3.15pm Meet at Hannafore point, West Looe with Looe Marine Conservation Group. Free! No need to book. Contact:

Friday 5August Strandline Search at Par Beach. With Natalie Gibb of Cornwall Wildlife Trust Your Shore Beach Rangers project and Friends of Par beach, 1pm – 3pm, meet on the beach, all welcome!