Retirement in Polperro
You have only to read the entries in this website's Guest Book to realise that not a few people have the aspiration to come and live in Polperro. Some actually do so!
Everyone who comes has their own reasons, of course, people are individuals, but there are a few main categories which can be identified:
We intend to develop this page to include information of relevance to both these groups of people - including, hopefully, some interesting case-histories of some who have been there before. Any volunteers?
- People of working age - some of whom buy or start businesses, often connected with the tourism industry, such as pubs, restaurants, shops or hotels and self-catering complexes, or practise a trade, such as jewellry-making or furniture restoration, for which there is demand. Others are professionals who work from home and can do so just as easily these days in Polperro as in London or Manchester - writers, journalists, artists, Internet designers.
- Retired people - in recent years the average age at which people retire has gone down significantly. Many people have a positive ambition to retire early, escape the increasing stress of the rat-race and enjoy themselves. As insurance company actuaries know only too well, the earlier you retire, the longer you can expect to live.
Regular car boot sales are held near to Polperro in summer months
Meanwhile, some basic considerations -
- Leisure activities - There are many opportunities in the Polperro area for walking. Its position on the coast means, of course, that boating, sailing, fishing and other water sports are a possibility - but bear in mind that Polperro harbour itself is very small, and tidal. Although a delightful place to keep a small boat, you may need to go further afield if you have a specialist boating or water-sport interest. There are many social activities possible in the area, with clubs or associations of many sorts, but again, if you have a very specialist interest you may have to travel some way. Two things Polperro is not short of is places to eat and drink!
- Housing - it depends, of course, where you are moving from, but compared to London housing in the south-east of Cornwall is cheap. However, this is not so true of the heart of Polperro, where the most picturesque properties can fairly be described as commanding prices in the London bracket.
- Environment - without doubt, Polperro and south-east Cornwall generally is a beautiful area. Atmospheric pollution levels are just about as low as they get in the British Isles.
- Climate - the area is mild but can be damp and, in autumn and winter, windy. When looking for a property it is well worth making sure that (a) it gets sun all year (some in deep valley situations don't in winter) and (b) that it is not unduly exposed to the elements - some properties overlooking the sea, though very desirable in other respects, may also get the full force of gales thrown at them.
- Topography - Cornwall is not East Anglia. The hills around Polperro may not be high, but they are steep. One of the attractions of the area is that it is all up and down. This may be no problem for the young and fit, but may be a serious consideration for older people or those with mobility impairments.
- Isolation - Polperro is a small community and is situated over 20 miles from the nearest large town or city (Plymouth). A car is arguably a near necessity, especially if you live in the rural areas around Polperro.
- Health - the mild climate is a positive attraction for many, but those with rheumatism or arthritis may notice that it is often damp as well. For those with health problems, it can be a long way to the nearest hospital facilities (Truro or Plymouth).
- Tourism - it's a fact of life that picturesque places like Polperro are a magnet for visitors. The sheer number of visitors can be a negative factor for people living in the village. However, most visitors leave by late afternoon and even in high season the village is much less busy in the evenings. If you live in the surrounding rural areas you will see less of the tourists, but they are a fact of life when shopping or trying to find parking in Looe or elsewhere, certainly in July and August each year.
- Quality of life - For many, the absence of the features of big-city life represents the very reason why life in Polperro is better. Whilst it may take many decades to be fully accepted by native Cornish people, there's no doubting the warmth and friendliness of the community, both native and in-comers. Many regret the extent to which the village has ceased to be primarily a fishing village, and the influx of in-comers, and holiday homes has without doubt had fundamental effects on the village. Most residents, and especially 'in-comers' would almost certainly say that the overall quality of life in the village and its surrounding area are good - and better than in big cities.
Many retired people will happily live out their lives, in Polperro or elsewhere, without needing permanent residential care. But some will need residential care, and others will need domiciliary services as they get older, so that they can continue to live in their own homes. Others may need respite care, for themselves or their spouse or partner and younger people may need domiciliary care after accidents or illness.
Polperro is fortunate in having a modern and attractive Care Home on the edge of the village. Restgarth Care Home also offers a wide range of domiciliary services and is, indeed, the largest provider of such services in south-east Cornwall. Full details are available on their website - click here.
Other providers of care in the area are invited to make their services known to the public via this page - please contact us on 01503 272 273 for details.