CROWN ESTATE OWNS SEA AND SEABED OFF COUNTY OF CORNWALL

12 October 2010

There was an interesting parliamentary question and answer the other day about the Crown Estate and Cornwall.

The deposition of dredged sediment from the Tamar in the sea off Rame Head, Cornwall had led to payment to the Crown Estate: payment was “in acknowledgement of the proprietorial rights and interests in the area concerned” (Hansard 11 October 2010 column 245W-246W).

As I explained in my post about the Submarine Mines Act in Aristotle’s teeth, the sea and seabed off Cornwall (and Britain) belongs to the UK monarch/government through the Crown Estate. They do not belong to the duke of Cornwall and this fact undermines the claim which some nationalists make that Cornwall is a sovereign entity of which the duke is the sovereign; or a crown dependency. Maritime countries have sovereignty of adjoining seas, their territorial waters, as do crown dependencies. For example, the waters within twelve nautical miles of the Isle of Man, a crown dependency, are not the territorial waters of the UK but of the Isle of Man.

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