Plymouth — A World Harbour through the ages

Research paper by Antony M. Knights, Louise B. Firth, Richard C. Thompson, Anna L.E. Yunnie, Keith Hiscock, Stephen J. Hawkins

Indexed on: 14 Mar '16Published on: 12 Feb '16Published in: Regional Studies in Marine Science


Plymouth Sound and adjacent estuaries, UK has been used as a working harbour throughout the ages and has a place in maritime history as the port from where the Pilgrim Fathers left for North America in 1620 on the Mayflower and Charles Darwin departed from on the HMS Beagle on his trip to Galapagos in 1831. Today, it remains a working harbour, home to the largest naval base in Western Europe, the host of numerous cruise ships and recreational boats, yet its complex of estuaries (Tamar, Plym, Lynher) and creeks is nationally and internationally recognised as of conservation importance due to its physical characteristics and flora and fauna. Here, we briefly recount the history and importance of Plymouth through the ages in terms of its historic use as a harbour, its marine science heritage and importance on the international stage. We also briefly describe its ecology.

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