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The First and Last Inn, Sennen, Cornwall | by Lincolnian (Brian) - BUSY, in and out
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The First and Last Inn, Sennen, Cornwall

The First & Last Inn is one of the most famous inns in Cornwall, not only due to its location in the village of Sennen, the most westerly village in the country, but because of its notorious reputation going back around 500 years, of being the headquarters of smugglers and wreckers.

 

The inn is thought to have been built about seven centuries ago. Smuggling was at its peak at the beginning of the 1800s. Brandy, silk and tea were among the goods brought in from France. In the inn is a glass covered well known as Annie's Well, which is thought to have been one of the secret tunnels and passages which were dug by the smugglers to evade capture. The name Annie's Well comes from Annie George who along with her husband Joseph ran the inn around this time. It is said that they managed to blackmail the landlord, Dionysius Williams, a wealthy farmer, into letting them live there rent-free, due to their knowledge of his smuggling business. Williams eventually decided to remove the couple from the inn. This infuriated Annie, who then turned King's evidence against Williams who was sentanced to a long term of imprisonment. Annie did not stop there, she turned on other villagers including Joseph's brother, John George after a row over a tobacco deal. He is said to have been convicted and hanged for this. The villagers eventually took their revenge on Annie for turning against them by staking her out on the beach at low tide, and as the water rose and the fishing nets they had pinned over her held her down she drew her last breath. It is said that her body was laid to rest in her bedroom before she was buried in an unmarked grave in the cemetery next to the pub. She still has her own room at the Inn and she doesn't like anyone else to sleep in it as has been made clear over the years with new landlords and their pets. Stories of dreams of drowning and being covered in fishing nets are common with people who have stayed in her room, and cats have been found shut in wardrobes and drawers. Some cliam to have seen a lady on the landing, others have felt something touch their hair or felt a sudden chill.

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Taken on June 22, 2011