Kilkhampton, Cornwall Family History Guide

Kilkhampton is an Ancient Parish in the county of Cornwall.

Other places in the parish include: Stebb and Thurdon.

Status: Ancient Parish

Parish church:

Parish registers begin:

  • Parish registers: 1537
  • Bishop’s Transcripts: 1608

Nonconformists include: Bible Christian Methodist and Wesleyan Methodist.

Table of Contents

Parishes adjacent to Kilkhampton

Historical Descriptions

The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales 1870

KILKHAMPTON, a village, a parish, and a sub-district, in Stratton district, Cornwall. The village stands 2¾ miles W of the river Tamar at the boundary with Devon, 3½ E of the coast near Lower-Sharpnose point, and 4 N by E of Stratton town and r. station; was once a market town; and has a post office under Stratton, and fairs on Holy Thursday, the third Thursday after that day, and 26 Aug. The parish extends to the coast, and comprises 8,077 acres of land, and 195 of water. Real property, £5,682. Pop., 1,198. Houses, 223. The property is divided among a few. The manor belonged, from the Conquest till 1711, to the Grenvilles, who became Earls of Bath; went then to the last Earl's aunt, the widow of George Lord Carteret; and passed, through her, to Lord John Thynne. A magnificent mansion, called Stowe, was built on the site of a previous mansion, in 1680, by one of the Grenvilles; was demolished in 1720; and is now represented by only a moated site. A picturesque ravine, called Combe-Valley, commences immediately N of the village; goes thence to the sea; and terminates there between lofty cliffs. The adjacent parts of the coast are grandly picturesque. The reservoir of the Bude canal is on the border. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Exeter. Value, £487. Patron, Lord John Thynne. The church is partly Norman; shows interesting features; has a pinnacled tower; was recently restored; contains carved seats, and costly memorials of the Granvilles; and was the scene of Harvey's "Meditations among the Tombs,'' while he served here as curate. There are chapels for Wesleyans and Bible Christians, a national school, and charities £39. The sub-district contains also Moorwinstow parish. Acres, 16, 228. Pop., 2, 066. Houses, 412.

Source: The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales [Wilson, John M]. A. Fullarton & Co. N. d. c. [1870-72].

The Cornwall Register 1847

Kilkhampton, (anciently Kilhamland,) is bounded by Morwinstow, the sea, Poughill, Launcells, and the Devonshire parishes of Pancrasweek, Sutcombe, and Bradworthy. The reservoir of the Bude Canal, covering 60 acres, is partly in this parish.

Rectorsinstituted 
1661July 8,Dionysius Grenville.
1672Mar.12,Joseph Corindon.
1711Oct. 2,Chaumond Grenville.
1726Mar. 2,William Leaver.
1763Sep. 20,William Cokayne.
1798Mar. 23,Joseph Monkhouse.
1800Ap. 12,Thomas Waldrou Hornbuckle.
1804Mar. 8,John Davis.
1810Oct. 2,The same; now resident in the parsonage house. The vacancy was occasioned by taking, on the 4th Sep. 1810, the adjoining vicarage of Poughill, which he still holds.

The richest specimen of the Saxon style, in Cornwall, is the south door-way of Kilkhampton church, which is ornamented with a great variety of grotesque heads and Saxon mouldings.

In the church, one of the finest in Cornwall, is a handsome monument to Sir Beville Grenville, whose grandfather, Sir Richard, the brave naval commander, married the heiress of Beville of Brynn, in Withiel, where Sir Beville was born on the 23d of March, 1595. He was slain at the battle of Lansdowne, the 5th of July, 1643, aged 48. See a collection of verses by the University of Oxford, on his death, printed in 1643, and again in 1684. King Charles's letters to Sir Beville, and to the county of Cornwall, are annexed. All the accounts and traditions of Sir Beville, represent him as a hero bordering on romance, as the rival of Sir Philip Sidney, and of Lord Herbert of Cherbury.

The Grenvilles, Granvilles, or Grenfelds, were settled at Stowe, in this parish, long before 1301, when their right to hold a market, by prescription, at Kilkhampton, was proved by quo warranto. Richard de Grenville, who came over with William the Conqueror, is said, in the pedigrees of the family, to have been a younger brother of Robert Fitzhamon, Earl of Carbeil, Lord of Thurigny and Granville, in France and Normandy, and to have been lineally descended from Rollo, Duke of Normandy. William Grenville, son of Sir Theobald, was Archbishop of York, and distinguished himself as an able statesman: he died in 1315. Sir Richard Granville, who had been created a baronet in 1631, was, after the death of his brother Sir Beville, made General of all the King's forces in the West. He died at Ghent, in 1658: leaving no male issue, the title became extinct. Sir John Grenville, son of Sir Beville, succeeded to the Kilkhampton estates. At a very early age he had a command in his father's regiment, and was left for dead on the field of Tewkesbury. He was appointed Governor of the Scilly Islands when they revolted from the Parliament, and was one of the chief instruments in effecting the restoration of King Charles II. He gave the living of Kilkhampton to his cousin, Nicholas Monk, afterwards Bishop of Hereford, and employed him to influence his brother, (the General,) in favour of the exiled monarch: having succeeded in his negociations, he had the satisfaction of being the bearer of the King's letters to General Monk, and to the Parliament. In April, 1661, he was created Lord Grenville of Kilkhampton and Bideford, Viscount Lansdowne, and Earl of Bath. He built a magnificent mansion at Stowe, of which scarcely a vestige remains. Soon after the decease of his grandson, William Henry, the third Earl, under age, in 1711, when the title became extinct, the house was taken down, and the materials of all kinds sold. Charles, eldest son of the first Earl, whom he succeeded, was killed by the accidental discharge of a pistol, 4th Sept. 1701, before his father's funeral, so that the three Earls of Bath were above ground at one time. The last of the male line of this noble family was George Grenville, the poet, who was created Lord Lansdowne in 1711, and died in 1734-5. Dr. Borlase observes that the family may be said, like the swan, to have sung most melodiously just before it expired. He was the son of Bernard Granville, son of Sir Beville, and brother of the first Earl of Bath. He was elected member for the county of Cornwall, with John Trevanion, Esq. after the great contest of 1710, amidst shouts of — Grenville and Trevanion, as sound as a Bell, For the Queen, the Church, and Sacheverel.

On the death of the third Earl of Bath, in 1711, the Kilkhampton estate passed to his aunt and co-heiress, Grace Grenville, who married George Lord Carteret, and was afterwards, (being a widow,) created Countess of Granville. That title became extinct, in 1776, on the death of the second Earl of Granville, by whose will the Kilkhampton estate passed to his grandson, Mr. Thynne, created Lord Carteret in 1784, whose nephew, the present Lord, now inherits it.

The Rev. James Hervey, who was born in 1714, and died on Christmas-day, 1758, resided, it is said, when Curate of this parish, at Aldercombe, with the Orchards. Here he wrote his Meditations among the Tombs; a frontispiece to which work seems intended to represent the interior of Kilkhampton church. Mr. Hervey succeeded his father as Rector of Weston-Favell, Northamptonshire.

Elmsworthy, in this parish, was the seat of the Westlakes, the last of whom died, about 1772, a pauper, having been twice pricked as sheriff after he became an inhabitant of the poor-house!

This parish, like the adjoining parishes of Morwinstow and Poughill, is entirely situated on the dunstone.

Source: The Cornwall Register. Wallis John; Bodmin; Printed by Liddell & Son 1847.

Administration

  • County: Cornwall
  • Civil Registration District: Stratton
  • Probate Court: Court of the Bishop (Consistory) of the Archdeaconry of Cornwall
  • Diocese: Exeter
  • Rural Deanery: Trigg Major
  • Poor Law Union: Stratton
  • Hundred: Stratton
  • Province: Canterbury