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Paignton Harbour

Address: Paignton

Paigntons Hidden Gem-The harbour

Many visitors to Paignton think that the town ends at the southern end of the promenade. Not so-just go through the archway to find Paignton Harbour one of Torbay`s hidden gems. The harbour is very picturesque little port with a mix of commercial fishing boats (including the Paignton Potters), pleasure boats, sail and motor vessels.

 You can book a boat or fishing trip, take a ferry to Torquay or Brixham or enjoy and evening or wildlife cruise where you may also learn what makes Tor Bay one of the few Geo parks in the world. Alternately, just spend an hour or so sitting on a seat and watching the activities in the harbour whilst enjoying a snack , some sea food or fish and chips .Or, if you have worked up an appetite, you can have a meal in one of the restaurants, cafes and bars around the harbour, where you can enjoy great views of Tor Bay,
There are gift shops, mini market a social club, rowing and sailing clubs, dive school and shop boat sales and water sports-so there is always something going on .

Until the 19th century Paignton (mentioned in the Doomsday book of 1086) was a fishing village .The Paignton Harbour Act lead to the construction of the existing harbour in 1837 –and the first commercial vessel carrying coal ,timber and stone came into the harbour in 1837,leaving with cabbages and cider.!
The harbour was then used by small Brigs and schooners for the rest of the century and remained in private hands until it was purchased by the council in 1935.The first Harbour Master was in fact a woman by the name of Stella Gale, the only female harbour master in the British Isles.

At the top of the west slipway the small whitewashed building , now the public toilets, used to be the `Preventatives Station’. These preventatives or excise men, had the job of trying to apprehend the smugglers who were very numerous along the coasts in the 18th and 19th centuries. Paignton sands and Goodrington being well known landing points for French brandy.

The site of the harbour lights restaurant was previously a pub which was built specifically to stop seamen going into Paignton and being mugged or worse on the marshes on their return .I believe it was called the Black Dog, sound piratical doesn`t it!

Much different today so pay us a visit

John Turner
Paignton Harbour Master

Here are some of the businesses situated at Paignton Harbour:

Harbour view social club- Bar- 01803 390518

Harbour lights restaurant.- 666500

Molly Malones snack bar –North quay

TJs café Bistro restaurant-great views- 01803 527389

Harbour sports- Surf and street clothing-water sport equipment -01803 550180

Paignton Gig and rowing club.visitors welcome- 01803 410920

Torbay Sea School-RYA training centre -01803 665556

Birchell Marine – Boat and PWC sales and service 01803 529362

Nautique dive centre- dive tuition ,charter, air and equipment supply .Also take away snack bar- 07413790268

Paignton Sailing Club- dinghy sailing at all levels including juniors and training, Visitors welcome- 01803 666606

Brittania sea scouts 0836519913

Blue sea food company- crab processing-01803 555777

Paignton Pleasure cruises- ferries ,wildlife cruises 07868014 174

Ashley`s fishing trips.-mackerel and deep sea and wreck fishing trips- 07767622717

Tuonela fishing trips- deep sea and wreck fishing-Peter Bingle 07715725327


Photo of Paignton Harbour

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