Best churches in Cornwall
Most of the churches in Cornwall, if not the UK, are Grade I listed buildings and it is not hard to see why. These buildings are a quintessential part of the British landscape and unique in many ways. Even within the UK there are differences in the style and form of churches and Cornwall is no excpetion. There is however, still great diversity within the chruches of Cornwall in both size and shape with many straying from the regular plan. It is often these that have interesting stories and legends attached to them. This top 10 list is in no way exhaustive, somewhat subjective and in no particular order.
Cornwall's only cathedral has to get a mention and rightfully so. The first cathedral in Britain for 800 years, it is built in the Gothic Revival style that was popular at the end of the 19th century. At 250ft tall, the cathedral's 3 spires still dominate the city.
For a village, the church of St Anietus is both large and ornate. Mainly 15th century the church features a two storey porch and 9th century cross in the churchyard. However, it is the splendid 17 stained glass windows that the church is best known for.
This Norman church is thought to have been named after a Breton princess. It is a good, solid Cornish granite church but it is the legend of the mermaid of Zennor which is of particular interest. The mermaid is featured in a carving and bronze dial within the church.
Set at the gates of the Tregothnan estate the tiny and picturesque village of St Michael Penkivel is home to a particularly attractive church. Built with money from the Boscawen family this is a fine church.
Widely regarded as one of the finest churches in the country, St Mary Magdalene's in Launceston dates back to the 16th century. It was financed by Sir Henry Trecarrel and the exterior is almost covered in carvings.
Dedicated to St Maganus and St Nocholas this is an attractive church made all the more so by its village setting. Nestling in the trees the 13th century church is overlooked by Laherne house, which is now a convent.
The beach here is known as Church Cove for obvious reasons. There aren't many churches anywhere that are closer to the sea. Other churches in Cornwall built on beaches have suffered from sinking in the sand or being buried in sand drifts. An unusual feature of St Winwalloe is the tower is seperate to the main church.
Another church gaining mention on account of its location is the Chruch of St Just the Martyr on the Roseland peninsula. The church overlooks St Just pool a creek on the Percuil River. The attractive 13th century church is set in sub-tropical gardens leading down to the water.
Not a church in the traditional sense, Gwennap Pit is none the less a place of worship. The first sermon was preached in 1762 by the methodist minister in the presence of John Wesley. It is said the biggest congregation ever was 32,000.
St Germans church is striking for 2 reasons. Firstly its twin Norman towers and secondly its size. It seems disproportionately compared to the village. The reason for this is it was Cornwall's cathedral.