The Lychgate Studio
The lychgate is quite unique in Cornwall, as it is believed to be one of only three in the county which has a room above the entrance passageway to the Church. One of the other similar structures is nearby in Truro at Kenwyn Church.
The lychgate was built in 1733 and has had a chequered history during the intervening 275 years. Its many uses have varied widely, from a school room to a piggery and in more recent times to a clergy and choir vestry. In its earlier days the upper room found use in an official capacity as an office for receiving rates. In modern times it has been a venue for art exhibitions.
The 2008 restoration was the second major refurbishment of the building with the first being in 1822 when the upper floor was rebuilt.
The lychgate is the “entranceway” into the much more historic precinct of the Grade 1 listed Church building, which is basically a much modified 15th century structures, with a list of Vicars stretching back to 1265. The interior of the Church exhibits some fine marble relief sculptures and is known for its painted (not stained) glass windows. The most historic monument at the Church is the Ignioc stone of Roman origin to be found beside the path near the south door.
Around and beyond the Church are two churchyards with some fine headstones, the Bellclose Sanctuary churchyard, where small wildlife is actively encouraged to breed and live, is situated on the opposite side of the roadway that leads down to the river with its beautiful river walks.
In recent years the lychgate studio has been let to artists.