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The parish of Kenwyn, (Cornish: Keynwynn), is situated in the Deanery and Hundred of Powder. It is bounded on the north by St Allen, on the east by St Clements, the parish of St Marys Truro and the river Fal, on the south by Kea, and on the west by St Agnes, the detached part of Kea called Tregavethen, and Perranzabuloe.

For many centuries Kenwyn and Kea formed what now seems one vast parish. Which church had the priority has been disputed. The Cornish historian, Charles Henderson, noted that in the thirteenth century, Kenwyn was regarded as a chapelry of Kea but that, after the Reformation, their roles were reversed. Henderson, thought, however, that Kenwyn was originally independent, and so could be claimed as the mother church of Truro.

This parish stretches north-west from Truro, Kenwyn church being on the outskirts of the city. A considerable part of the City of Truro was in this parish. Although so near to the centre of Truro, it has rural scenery and an attractive wooded valley. At the beginning of the 21st century, Kenwyn is regarded as a suburb of the City of Truro.

During the 19th century, many parish boundaries changed because of the moving centres of population; many parts of Kenwyn were redefined as separate parishes. Chacewater chapelry was removed from this parish in 1837 when it became the centre of the new parish of its own. The (new) parish of Mithian, was also created from part of Kenwyn in 1847. The Truro Railway Station is in Kenwyn parish. Kenwyn also contains the villages of Shortlanesend, Tregavethan and Idless.

The ecclesiastical parish of St Allen united with Kenwyn on 1 July 1991 by an Order in Council.


The Cornwall Family History Society have published Monumental Inscriptions for the Parish Church - 3232 entries. These are available on-line.

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Census information for this parish (1841 - 1901) is held in the Cornwall Record Office. The Cornwall Family History Society offers a census search service for its members. The Cornwall Family History Society have also published on-line census detail by surname on the FamilyHistoryonLine site.

Specific census information for this parish is available as follows:

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Church History

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Church Records

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Civil Registration

The parish of Kenwyn has been in the Truro Registration District continuously from 1st July 1837. There were sub-districts at Kea, Kenwyn, Probus, St. Agnes, St. Clement and St Just-in-Roseland, but these have now been abolished. Parishes in this registration district are: Cornelly, Cuby, Feock, Gerrans, Kea, Kenwyn, Ladock, Lamorran, Merther, Perranzabuloe, Philleigh, Probus, Ruan Lanihorne, St. Agnes, St. Allen, St. Anthony in Roseland, St. Clement, St. Erme, St. Feock, St. Just in Roseland, St. Michael Penkevil, Tregavethan, Tregony St. James, Truro St. Mary, Veryan.

The address of the Registration Office is: Dalvenie House, New County Hall, Truro, TR1 3AY.
Tel: 01872 322241.

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Description & Travel

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OPC Assistance. The On-line Parish Clerk (OPC) scheme operates a service to help family historians; the OPC page for this parish is available on-line, from where the OPC can be contacted by email.

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Historical Geography

The Domesday Settlements of Cornwall, a study undertaken by the Cornwall Branch of the Historical Association, has identified and located settlements listed in the Exeter and Exchequer Domesday Survey of AD 1086. The following places have been identified in Kenwyn ecclesiastical parish:

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Poorhouses, Poor Law, etc.

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General Notes. Population Statistics:
  • Population in 1801 - 4017 persons
  • Population in 1811 - 5000 persons
  • Population in 1821 - 6221 persons
  • Population in 1831 - 8492 persons
  • Population in 1841 - 9607 persons, plus 33 in the Royal Cornwall Infirmary
  • Population in 1851 - 9743 persons
  • Population in 1861 - 10673 persons
  • Population in 1871 - 9787 persons
  • Population in 1881 - 8639 persons
  • Population in 1891 - 9787 persons
  • Population in 1901 - 6737 persons
  • Population in 1911 - 3760 persons
  • Population in 1921 - 1197 persons (Kenwyn Rural)
  • Population in 1931 - 1212 persons (Kenwyn Rural)
  • Population in 1951 - 1283 persons (Kenwyn Rural)
  • Population in 1961 - 1428 persons (Kenwyn Rural)
  • Population in 1971 - 1791 persons (Kenwyn Rural)
  • Population in 1981 - 3660 persons
  • Population in 1991 - 4480 persons
  • Population in 2001 - 4944 persons
  • Population in 2011 - 5527 persons

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Kenwyn parish comprises 8062 acres of land. Mithian was created from part of parish in 1847.

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