Recreational water-users are of great economic importance to Cornwall, UK. Concerns over the potential impact of the Wave Hub renewables test site in Cornwall on inshore recreational wave amenity has prompted research into potential changes to wave height and period. There is little existing research however to indicate what surf conditions are ‘preferred’ by various beach water-user groups, nor how they perceive the inshore wave resource. It is therefore unclear how likely they are to be affected by, or if they will correctly perceive, any changes to the wave climate caused by devices at Wave Hub or future renewables projects. Questionnaire data from 403 water-users collected at two beaches in the lee of Wave Hub reveal the characteristics of water-users in the region, including ideal conditions for water recreation, and their perception of the abundance of the wave resource.
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