We do love to be beside the seaside

In the garden of my house in Cornwall there is a smooth granite stone about the size and shape of a goodly pumpkin. In the middle, where the stalk would be, there is a hole filled with rusting iron. The day I moved in, a neighbour told me that the hole was drilled and filled with molten iron to attach a hook, long since rusted away, to make a ‘sinking stone’. Smuggled cargo could be submerged just off shore if there were any danger of meeting King George’s men, to be harvested when the coast was clear. About a year later, another Cornish neighbour saw it and told me that,