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Gallery: Churches of Cornwall
by Jo Lewis, 1 December 2017
Carrick Part 5: Churches of Merther, Fentgollan,
The lost St Cohan's Chapel lay on the
outskirts of Merther when heading there from Tresillian. St Coan
field is on the right-hand side after the road forks right to
Merther and heads towards the village. This was the first chapel
of that name, dating to around 1370 and named for St Cohen (Coan)
after he was murdered in his hermitage near here during King
Athelstan's conquest of Cornwall. The chapel was destroyed around
1750 and by 1860 the last stones had been removed.
The church of St Coan or St Coanus,
Merther, lies a little further along the road towards Merther, on the
left before the farm. Although there are warning signs, the Grade 2
listed building is still accessible. It was once the main church in
the Tregothnan area, until the 1900s witnessed a falling local
population and also attendance figures. In 1904 a more conveniently
positioned church at Tresillian Bridge was enlarged. St Coan became
a mortuary chapel and later fell into ruin.
Merther Lane Wesleyan Chapel lies along
Merther Lane, on the right-hand side next to a cottage. This small
chapel was built in 1842, and there are records of a Sunday school
attendance between 1892-1899. Built as a Wesleyan chapel it became
Merther Lane Methodist Church at the Methodist union in 1932
and was part of Truro Methodist Circuit. Twentieth century post-war
attendances showed a marked decline and the chapel was forced to
close in 1975.
The lost church of St Mary, Fentongollan,
also lies on Merther Lane, after turning right at the corner turn
to St Michael Penkivel (see below). There is a wayside cross opposite
the turn. The chapel here was dedicated to the Virgin Mary. It is
marked on 1888 maps as site of St Mary's Chapel and its exact position
can be deduced by comparison with modern maps. Some stone gate posts
survive, along with a stone wall.
The Church of St Michael Penkivel is
in the eponymous village (sometimes Penkevil). This Grade 1 listed
church lies close to the Tregothnan estate. It was consecrated in
1261; probably consisting only of a nave and chancel. In 1319 a
petition was granted by the bishop of Exeter to form a collegiate
church by building a chantry for four chaplains. The current church
was built in 1862-66 on the site of the old one. It consists of
chancel, nave, north and south transepts.
St Moran or St Morenna, Lamorran,
lies close to the creek. The church was built in the mid-thirteenth
century and has never been enlarged. It was dedicated to St Morenna
in 1261, underwent unsympathetic restoration in 1845 under William
White, and further work in 1853 for Lord Falmouth, Evelyn Boscawen,
sixth viscount. The tower is separate from the church and the font
of Catacleuse stone may be Norman. The church was temporary closed
during 2017 thanks to bats.