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Polperro harbour is owned by the local Parish ratepayers and is administered by a Board of Harbour Trustees established by an Act of Parliament in 1894.
A light was established in 1904, but the current light was built in 1911 and exhibited at an elevation of 141 feet on Spy House Point. It is a white painted brick beacon 16 feet high and has a white painted entrance door. On top is a lantern. Steps reach the light and green painted railings surround the light but the old white painted stone rubble wall, which enclosed the unit, has been demolished.
The light was visible for 12 miles but was discontinued in 1958 when three new lights were established. The old Coastguard lookout which used to be adjacent to the light was demolished in 1989 but the path to both the lighthouse and the lookout bear the name of Reuben's Walk; named after Reuben Oliver, a local magistrate and Parish Council official who as an old man, although blind, used to walk out to the light whenever he could.
In the tidal basin of Polperro harbour there is a fixed white light visible for four miles shown from a small stone structure on the west pier and changed to red if the harbour is closed in bad weather.