Ice Age: The rounded, sculptural stones of Fetch Rock were
carved and shaped by the Ice-Age. Partial cave paintings were discovered
in the caves beneath the lighthouse, dating from this era. Mammoths
and Snow Tigers may have hunted around the island!
Bronze Age: a family, or tribe,. lived on the island. They
hunted on the mainland, and crossed to the island on foot! The sand
dunes and beaches were partly visible above the water. Many of these
natural bridges still exist, and cause problems for shipping. Hence
The dangerous sands: Many ships, their cargo and crew,
have been lost to the 'Whipside Sands'. This sand bank sits under
the surface of the water, and is invisible during bad weather. After
decades of destruction is was deemed appropriate to build a lighthouse
at Fetch Rock, to warn ships of the sand, and rocks, during bad
or foggy weather.
The Lighthouse: Work began in March 1890, under the watchful
eye of local philanthropist 'Robert Demarion' (also known for his
guides to native fish and flora). The lamp itself was manufactured
in Birmingham, and shipped to fetch Rock in 1910. The lighthouse
was finally manned in 1905, and the light shone for several years
before the mysterious 'incident' in 1912.
Disaster!: The lighthouse fell silent on April 29th, a
fog shrouded night in 1912. No-one knows what happened to the three
'keepers'. See 'Legends'.
The War: A radio communications/monitoring station was
built on the west side of the island, during World War 2. It was
manned by several operators, and home to a small troop from the
R.A.F. The hut still exists, and currently houses a display of wartime
memorabilia, and historic photographs from the era.
Automation: The lighthouse continued to be manned, after
1913, for 50 years! In 1963, on November 23rd, the last keepers
locked the hut door...and left Fetch Rock forever. A newly installed
timer/generator would activate the lamp and fog horn. An era had
Abandoned: New GPS (global positioning technology) means
that fishermen, shipping and the coastguard are less dependent on
the traditional lighthouse. In 1984 power was cut to Fetch Rock,
and the island was forgotten.
New Interest: 1992: An archeology group, based in Trewarthan,
became interested in fetch rock after viewing a documentary regarding
famous disappearances. The mystery surrounding Fetch Rock fueled
their imaginations, and desire to visit the island. Soon, the group
were renamed "The Fetch Rockers", and generated much media
interest. Their main aim was to re-open the island, and invite the
public to visit.
Rocking!: The 'Fetch Rockers' (of which I am a member),
were given permission to inhabit the island by the B.L.B. (British
Lighthouse Board) in 1996. Essential repairs had been completed,
and the upper floors were habitable. The group used their unique
base of operations to their advantage, and began transmitting their
own radio station (Fetch Rock Radio) in 1997.
Renovation: A commercial radio station, and media exposure,
excited the people of Cornwall. Interest in the Lighthouse, and
island, were at a record high. The general public aided the application
to TV's 'Renovation' archeology series. The application was approved,
and Fetch Rock went on to win that years vote! Hurrah!! A winning
design, and proposed usage of the building, inspired the British
population to back Fetch Rock, and turn the long neglected island
to a top tourist attraction.
A ripple through time: During the renovations, many of
the workmen complained of ill feeling, and unexplained accidents.
Peoples thoughts turned to ghosts. Once again, fetch rock, hit the
headlines, and the 'Renovation' fund became nervous of a bad situation.
Polly White, semi-famous paranormal expert, was called in. Known
to the media as "Poltergeist Polly", she carried out a
full supernatural survey, and confirmed that Fetch Rock was haunted!
With the fact now stated, and brutally reported, interest in the
island rocketed. Polly sensed no 'negative energy', only the souls
of those wishing to pass on. This was enough to reassure the 'Renovation'
fund, and the work continued uninterrupted.
Right Here/Right Now: Fetch Rock is open, all year, to
all members of the public. Travel from Trewarthan (using Spivey
Crossing Service) and explore the fascinating, and mysterious island
and lighthouse. Lively displays and interactive events inspire children
to learn history, and adults are reminded of bygone times. We look
forward to seeing YOU here at Fetch Rock, sometime soon. Beware,
the ghosts may be looking forward to your arrival, nearly as much
as we are.