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In 2011 Paramount Pictures filmed parts of the film World War Z starring Brad Pitt in Falmouth Docks and off the coast.Falmouth has the first "Polytechnic": Royal Cornwall Polytechnic Society which went into administration briefly in 2010 but is now a feature of the town with frequent art exhibitions, stage performances and an art house cinema.

The ship stayed a few days and Captain Robert Fitz Roy visited the Fox family at nearby Penjerrick Gardens.Further up the sheltered reaches of the Fal there are several ships laid up, awaiting sailing orders and/or new owners/charterers. The town was the birthplace of Toad, Mole and Rat: Kenneth Grahame's classic The Wind in the Willows began as a series of letters sent to his son.Falmouth is a popular holiday destination and it is now primarily a tourist resort. The first two were written at the Greenbank Hotel whilst Grahame was a guest in May 1907.Penmere railway station opened on 1 July 1925 towards the north of Falmouth and within easy walking distance of the top of The Moor.All three stations are served by regular trains from Truro on the Maritime Line.Darwin's shipmate Sulivan later made his home in the nearby waterside village of Flushing, then home to many naval officers.

In 1839 Falmouth was the scene of a gold dust robbery when £47,600 worth of gold dust from Brazil was stolen on arrival at the port.

While Falmouth's maritime activity has much declined from its heyday, the docks are still a major contributor to the town's economy. Falmouth is still a cargo port and the bunkering of vessels and the transfer of cargoes also keep the port's facilities busy.

The port is also popular with cruise ship operators.

Falmouth Town is a civil parish within Cornwall, formed in 1974 from the historic Falmouth Borough Council. As of 2017, it is governed by sixteen councillors (four represent the Boslowick Ward, three each for the Arwenack, Penwerris, Smithick and Trescobeas). The majority of everyday services are provided by Cornwall Council which is a unitary authority governing the entirety of mainland Cornwall.

Falmouth elects five councillors to Cornwall Council.

Falmouth is home to many theatre groups, including Falmouth Theatre Company, Falmouth Young Generation and Amity Theatre.