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The St. Ives Fishermen's Lodges - these often overlooked, modest yet beautifully atmospheric shelters have stood the tests of time overlooking the majestic St. Ives Bay. Within the lodges the many stories passed down through the generations are held within their delicate walls. They've survived two World Wars, a fishing and vessel heyday along with the steady decline of the fishing industry. Today tourism has become the mainstay of the town, and as the thousands of holiday makers visit they pass the lodges without realising what they are. 


This website is a journey through the history and stories of the lodges and its people, bringing together those who have connections with them and who cherish them for what

they important symbol and reminder of old St. Ives.

Barbara Santi, 2021


All photos are the copyright of The Lodges and St. Ives Archive unless stated and cannot be reproduced.

 Archive audio recordings and information is the copyright of St. Ives Archive

All moving image work is the copyright of Barbara Santi unless stated and cannot be reproduced.


"Boys were to be seen and not heard, but not in any of the lodges. When I was five or six, I can recall my grandfather taking me by the hand around Downlong and dropping into the Shore Shelter before we returned home. Therefore, my grandfather was my passport for entry." Brian Stevens

Downlong, Uplong 

Recognised until the second world war, 

'Downlong' describes the area where the fishermen lived and worked. 

'Uplong' was the commercial area of the town

with the dividing line approximately at the parish church.


One hundred and seventeen fathoms


The Great Carbona


I navigated the 

Constellations of the dark

Winter nights


A melted breath-haze in the

Torchlight card-maps

Of the Northern Sky 


Sirius burnt blue-white phosphor


Moon brittled

The still room of my before sleep


And I dreamt my childhood




Peter VealInterviewed May 1968
00:00 / 07:10

Dr. Roger Slack talks to Peter Veal about his connection with St. Ives and about the characters he knew growing up, including his recollections of Alfred Wallis. Peter was born in Baileys Lane in 1892.  Also present is his wife, Annie.

Photos copyright Tony Farrell

y Tony Farrell


The terms  “Uplong” and “Downlong” have long been used in St.Ives to distinguish between two separate parts of the town. Traditionally Downlong referred to that part of the Old Town that lay around the harbour and included all the backstreets out as far as Porthmeor beach. Those people who lived Downlong would mostly have made their living from fishing or associated activities. In contrast, Uplong was the hill slopes and the Stennack valley that lay outside the Old Town area. There was no exact or clear dividing line between the two areas. Traditionally, those people who lived Uplong would have been tinners or farmers.

At one time it has been said that the traditional Cornish game of hurling was contested in St.Ives by one team representing Uplong (in red shirts) and another team representing Downlong (in white shirts).

In more recent times, the two terms have come to represent something rather more different. Downlong is now effectively devoid of local, or native, inhabitants and represents that part of the Town dominated by second homes and holiday lets. Most of Downlong St.Ives is effectively empty of inhabitants for 6 months of the year. Uplong now consists mostly of housing estates where the majority of St.Ives inhabitants actually live – this part of the Town has grown and spread since the end of WWII.  This divide is not only geographical it is also a significant socio-economic divide that is seldom highlighted.

George Farrell interviewed by Janet Axten in 2009.

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