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Churches of the British Isles

Gallery: Churches of Cornwall

by Jo Lewis, 11 September 2020

Restormel (South) Part 28: Churches of Bridges to Tretoil

Bridges (First) Bible Christian Chapel, Bridges, Cornwall

Bridges (First) Bible Christian Chapel could once be found on the north flank of Luxulyan station, where the present industrial units stand behind the old corn mill. It appears on the 1888 OS map but is gone entirely from the map by 1907 by which time it had been replaced by the second chapel (see links). Archives show a lease dated 1819, although they suggest that the chapel itself was built in 1846. Documentation related to William O'Bryan backs up the 1819 date.

Rosemelling Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, Rosemelling, Cornwall

Travelling south-west from Bridges finds Rosemelling Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, standing on the western side of the main lane through this hamlet, opposite the junction with the 'u'-shaped turning along which most of the residential houses lie. The chapel was built in 1872 with an interior deigned by Sylvanius Trevail. Archives exist for the chapel for 1892-1949, and planning documents show approval for conversion into a private dwelling in 1975.

Bodiggo Old Chapel, Bodiggo, Luxulyan, Cornwall

Bodiggo Old Chapel once stood in the settlement of the same name, to the north-west of Luxulyan via Cross. The Reformation destroyed a good many private chapels, mainly chantry chapels. Those in Cornwall had been licensed by the bishops of Exeter from the thirteenth century onwards. The second-earliest to be licensed in Cornwall - in 1283 - was at Boswythgy (Bodiggo) in Luxulyan parish. As is often the case, nothing remains of the chapel today.

Gunwen Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, Gunwen Cornwall

Gunwen Wesleyan Methodist Chapel and adjoining burial ground lie on the southern side of the lane at Lowertown, immediately north of Lower Gurtla and further from Gunwen. In 1789 William Bryant (O'Bryan) was born at Gunwen Farm. He became a Methodist preacher and built the first Gunwen chapel about 1796 on land he donated. The chapel gained its name from the farm. He was expelled by his society in 1810, and formed the Bible Christian Church in 1815.

Gunwen Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, Gunwen Cornwall

The original Gunwen chapel was replaced by the present building in 1869. It also underwent complete restoration in 2017, resulting in the 'before' (above) and 'after' photos here. It is a simple two-storey building of typical Cornish Methodist chapel appearance with no direct connection between the two floors: the ground floor is a meeting room and the first floor chapel is approached by an exterior staircase at the rear corner. Today it is a Grade 2 listed building.

St Inunger's Old Chapel, Bugle, Cornwall

St Inunger's Old Chapel (or St Inonger) once stood on the site of today's St Inunger Farm on the southern edge of the A30, and a short way north of Fenton Pitts. It was noted in 1284 as Stungongar and in 1588 as St Gonger. Ingongar is thought to be expanded from the name St Congar, a pan-Celtic saint. Old maps mark St Congar's well but not the chapel, medieval, and probably demolished at the Reformation. The St Ingunger cross is located 300m south-east of the well.

Five photos on this page by Jo Lewis, and one kindly contributed by Douglas Law via the 'History Files: Churches of the British Isles' Flickr group.



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