View Full Version : What about Cornwall in the U.K. for LF photos?

18-Sep-2015, 21:43
After binge watching the Doc Martin television series on Netflix this month, I have been thinking of a trip to the English countryside area Cornwall with some of my LF cameras and lenses.

For those of you experienced with the area, what might be the best time of year for B&W landscapes?

I imagine a television series filmed on location there for seven years has promoted tourism, hasn't it? :)

How are the U.K. airports on handling boxes of film?

Doc Martin on IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0408381/?ref_=ttfc_fc_tt

19-Sep-2015, 00:16
Spring or Autumn are the best times to shoot in Cornwall. You need to avoid the British school holiday times over Easter & in the Summer as every where gets very busy. Cornwall has always been a popular tourist destination so the TV series won't have had much effect except perhaps on the village it's shot in. There's a lot to see and visit in Cornwall, the Eden Center, some amazing gardens etc have a look at the Cornish Tourist board website. I try to get there each year and rent a cottage, which is much cheaper outside the main tourist period.

You''d be best to fly to Heathrow and hire a car, it's approx a 4-5 hour drive from there.

UK airports scan films (no hand checks) which must be in your carry on luggage (not checked in and in the hold) but the scanners are totally safe for many multiple passes so you won't have an issue. (I fly with LF film quite frequently).

If you want more info email me (PM box fills to quickly here).


19-Sep-2015, 00:46
The scenery of Cornwall is not all doc martin, the farther west you go, the more rugged and austere it gets, and becomes less changeable over the seasons.
Personally, I don't see any particular season as being any "better" than any other.
Late July, the whole of august and some of early September are best avoided if you don't like hordes of people about.

Steven Tribe
19-Sep-2015, 02:38
Devon and Cornwall have always been overrun in the summer and have suffered from traffic congestion and lowest common denominator as far as eating places and "ye olde shoppe" are concerned. You can find islands of charm, but the same can be said of anywhere in the UK. Somerset, Dorset and Wales/Welsh borders spring to mind as having more leasurely atmosphere and still full of charm. Apart from Exmoor, Devon and Cornwall are a bit treeless.
If you choose D & C, the further inland you are the less spoilt the scenery!

I am a softy about UK TV series as an expat and find lots of charm in many current series even the N.E north of Durham (George Gently).

19-Sep-2015, 03:47
Treelessness only matters of course if you want to take pictures of a lot of trees :cool:

Speaking as a resident of Dorset, you may have slightly rose-coloured expat glasses on about it regarding it's "charm".

I'd rather be in west penwith any day. Should have moved there when I had the money and motivation a few years ago. Sigh.

19-Sep-2015, 06:56
I'd try to go during British Summer time as when the clocks go forward in the Winter it's short days, dark late in the afternoon.


Steven Tribe
19-Sep-2015, 07:47
Not if you get up an hour earlier!

Andrew O'Neill
20-Sep-2015, 11:32
Excellent place for LF work! So much to see. When I was there, I focused on the Tors in the moors near Plymouth, and a few cathedrals that I wanted to see. Don't worry about your film. check-in machines will do no harm.

Martin Aislabie
21-Sep-2015, 13:53
Cornwall is a fabulous place for photography

I think, the best times are from mid April until the end of June and from mid Sept until the end of Oct.

Mid summer is best avoided due to all the tourists and winter is difficult due to the low angle of the sun and the short periods of daylight.

East Cornwall and Devon are rolling lush countryside and West Cornwall is more rugged and costal.

You will need stronger filters than you are probably normally use, to bring out detail in the rather watery skies that we have.

Bring loads of film because firstly the place is awash with photographic locations and secondly you are a very long way from anywhere where you can buy any more. If you carry it there and back as hand luggage the film will be fine.


21-Sep-2015, 14:15
Just remember the water in Cornwall is totally undrinkable, but they have St Austell Tribute or Sharpes Antlantic instead, or of you're feeling maudlin Doombar :D too many and over the cliffs :). . . .

Steven says get up an hour early in the winter, only problem is shops etc don't and the Gardens don't and many shut in the winter. I'm really not a Garden person but the Gardens in Cornwall are something else often in small valleys with unique micro climates and truly amazing, great for photos.

My preference is the wild rugged south west, it's very varied and only bits are wild. The Barbara Hepworth museum in her old home and the Tate both in St Ives are a must, and visit Mousehole. I took my wife there 8 or 9 years ago with my mum and aunt, the next morning my wife says someones stolen the sea :D Cornwall has some of the Highest/Lowest tides in the world, like a full bath / empty bath twice a bay except that's the harbours. My wife's used to the Aegean :D