St Merryn Cornwall, St Merryn
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Welcome to the parish church of St Merryn near Padstow in Cornwall. We set out to be a church of the Christian family for all ages. We enjoy sharing our services and events with our many visitors. Do join us on Sunday. Our incumbent is Rev'd Canon Julia Wilkinson.
This parish, includes more than 5 ½ miles of coastline, with some of the most dramatic cliffs and beautiful beaches in Cornwall. Most villages in Cornwall have a ‘Churchtown’ separate from the village, reflecting the fact that in the middle ages the population was totally farm based. All ancient pathways and rights of way centre on the church. Next to the church is the Church Hall with large free car park. Opposite is the Rick Steins Cornish Arms public house.
It was probably in the second half of the sixth century that the missionary priest Merryn arrived here from Wales, possibly coming up from Padstow or associated with the followers of St. Cadoc who earlier established a chapel just upstream from Harlyn Bay.
The first resident vicar, John de Withiel, was installed on the 2nd July 1259. He would have found a cruciform Norman Church with chancel, nave and tower. An early chronicler described the tower as ‘low and stumpy’ and so it probably remained until the fifteenth century.
The south aisle is separated from the nave by a beautiful arcade of seven pillars and Gothic arches of Cataclews stone, quarried on Trevose Head in 1422. The south porch and two stages of the bell tower were added at the same time.
The impressive wagon roof dates from 1422 and has many carved roof boses. Three grotesquely carved roof bosses and the carved oak wall plate along part of the top and south wall are original fifteenth century work and of particular interest.
The beautifull Cataclews stone font has carved panels depicting the twelve apostles.
Charles ll Coat of Arms
Near the North West corner tower steps is the Charles ll Royal Coat of Arms designed and made in plaster in 1662. It was given to the church by Thomas Peter of Harlyn House, who fought gallantly for the royalist cause in the Civil War.
The six bells, dated 1796 - 97, are used every Sunday and St. Merryn welcomes visiting ringers. In the ringing chamber the Ringing Rhymes panel depicts various ringing crimes with appropriate penalties.
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The current editor is: Brian Wood