Church of England Diocese of Exeter Parracombe

About Us

Welcome to the parish of Parracombe on the edge of Exmoor

It is thought there has been a Christian presence in Parracombe since about A. D. 520 when the Celtic Saint Petrock is reputed to have visited the area. The small church of St Petrock stands at the edge of the village and was built late in the 11th century by William of Falaise, a relative of William the Conqueror.

In 1879, there was concern for the structure of St Petrock and it was threatened with demolition. Following a public outcry supported by the artist and philanthropist John Ruskin, St Petrock was reprieved and repaired and today is cared for by The Churches Conservation Trust. It is used once each year for the service of the Spring festival, Parracombe Revels.

Following a local fund raising effort to which Ruskin himself gave £10, Christ Church was built as the new parish church in a more central location in the village.

If you stand by the porch at Christ Church and look across the valley of the River Heddon, you will see Holwell Castle, a remarkably well preserved example of a Norman motte and bailey castle which was also built by William of Falaise. An information board explains why the castle was built here and how it would have looked in Norman times.

Today, Christ Church is one of the eight churches that form the Lyn Mission Community. A warm welcome awaits you in Christ Church or any of the churches in our area.