THE owners of Lamorna Cove have called for public support after its historic quay was left badly damaged by perilous weather conditions.
Large swells and high winds brought huge waves crashing on to Cornwall's coastline over the past week and one was seen to tear a gaping hole in the structure and cause part of it to crumble away.
The quay is grade two listed, and as part of the cove falls under the ownership of Roy Stevenson. His daughter Sally, 27, who undertakes an administrative role for her father, said the family really cared about rebuilding and preserving it, but the bill would be too much to bear alone.
"We want to fix it; we don't want it to fall into the sea," she said. "If anybody has any idea how we can get this funded we would be grateful. We want some positivity; what we're saying is, 'Help us'."
Having lived in Lamorna since she was 9, she said, she didn't want to "see her childhood crumble away", and would be as upset as anyone if repairs were not made. Following similar problems in 2006 a quote to restore the structure came to £1.2 million, and the Stevensons say they are now hoping other people will suggest ways in which its future can be assured.
A Facebook post from the cove's café, run by Mr Stevenson's son Dan, responding to residents who had voiced concern, said the quay was built in 1850 and had a life expectancy of 100 years, and that maintaining it came at a price.
Many locals have taken to the social media website to voice their fears that part of the cove's heritage is under threat.
Melanie Pegg wrote: "Such a shame. It is such a pretty cove to visit, but the sea wall hasn't been maintained in recent years," while Robert Mitchell offered another solution: "The National Trust needs to take it over. A beautiful spot going to rack and ruin."
Cornwall Council has also commented on the situation, as it holds statutory powers given the grade two listing.
In a statement the council said it had not yet got involved: "Neither the council's historic environment service nor its building control team has received a report with concerns about Lamorna quay. However, as it is privately owned, the owner will have a duty of care to make sure the site is safe for members of the public.
"In general terms, when grade two properties are damaged we would hope to work closely with the owner to agree either temporary works or permanent repairs, whichever solution is necessary."