CAMPAIGNERS have raised thousands of pounds in just days to fight a 25-year seaweed farm licence granted in Port Isaac Bay, which they claim was passed without locals’ knowledge.

Following a packed public meeting, the Save Port Isaac Bay Group (SPIBG) was formed to fight the development, equivalent to 140 football pitches - 100 Ha - and located less than one-and-a-half miles from the shore.

The group is aiming to raise £14,000 to pay for expert scientific, environmental and legal advice to revoke the plans in the designated National Landscape - previously an ‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’.

Following extensive fundraising and crowdfunding, the group are just a few hundred pounds off their £14,000 target.

The development in Port Isaac Bay was only discovered when locals, who were fighting plans for a neighbouring farm in Port Quin Bay, stumbled across it.

The group has since been supported by ‘Walking Dead’ star Andrew Lincoln and ‘Doc Martin’ actor Martin Clunes.

A spokesperson for SPIBG said: “Only recently have the community become aware of this industrial sized development exploiting one of our beloved bays and visible from The Rumps to Tintagel on the South West Coast Path.

“Apparently, there had been a public consultation. Under the Marine Management Organisation rules this consisted of one public notice placed in one local newspaper for a week and a notice displayed in a tourist car park in August 2022 when the country was still reeling from the extraordinary shock of Covid and Lockdown Rules.

“Despite having received no public responses at all, which surely tells you something, the MMO is satisfied that it had done its job even though none of us who live here, walk, swim, surf, fish, or enjoy the coastal paths and beaches had any idea that this licence had been applied for, or granted. It’s another failure by a government agency.”

The group has expressed that they are not anti-seaweed farms, the companies who operate them, or their potential benefits, but believe the government need to rework policies for location and public consultation with local and broader communities who benefit mentally, emotionally and financially from the coastline.

In a letter to the MMO from Cornwall National Landscapes (AONB), who have only recently become aware of the development Cornwall National Landscape planning officer Jim Wood said: "We object to this proposed seaweed farm on the basis of the unacceptable harmful effects on the coastal landscape and seascape which forms the setting of this part of the designated landscape and which enjoys the same protection from harmful development as the designated landscape itself."

The Post has contacted applicants Penmayn Ltd for comment.