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"MAKER parish, which occupies a great part of the bold promontory and peninsula, which juts out into the English Channel on the west side of Plymouth Sound, and the south side of the harbour of Hamoaze, opposite Stonehouse and Devonport, is partly in Cornwall, and contains 2725 inhabitants and 2260 acres of land, of which 1156 souls and about 1320 acres are in VAULTERSHOME tithing, which is in Devonshire, and includes the beautiful seat of Mount Edgcumbe, the parish church, the village of Kingsand, and part of Millbrook. The whole parish was in the Archdeaconry of Cornwall and Deanery of East, and the Union of St Germans...
The Parish church of Maker is dedicated to St. Macra, and the living is a discharged vicarage, valued at £2333, in the patronage of the Lord Chancellor, and the incumbency of the Rev. Edward Trelawney, M.A." [From: White's History, Gazetteer and Directory of Devonshire, 1850]

The name of the parish, (Cornish: Magor), is said to have been derived from either St Macarius, a native of Egypt, who flourished in the 14th century, or from St Macra, the virgin daughter of a Scottish King, who was martyred at Rheims in AF 304. It is bounded on the north by St John's Lake, on the east by Plymouth Sound and on the south by the parish of Rame and the sea. Peskett: "The tithing of Vaulterhome was in the county of Devon until it was transferred to Cornwall in 1844. Millbrook and West Stonehouse (distinguish East Stonehouse) are in this parish." Millbrook was created from part of Maker in 1867.

The parish, which in 1943 was united with that of Rame, is in the extreme south-east of Cornwall separated from Plymouth by the stretch of water known as 'Plymouth Sound'. The two villages in Maker and Rame are Kingsand and Cawsand.

A few fisherman were settled here in 1483 when Henry Tudor, later Henry VII, landed here briefly as part of an abortive attempt to overthrow Richard III. The real influx of people began when Plymouth merchants built pilchard cellars along the beach (still here) in Elizabeth I's reign and in the next two centuries smuggling flourished, the goods obtained both from cross-Channel trips and incoming merchantmen. The villages were the headquarters of West Country free trade, finally suppressed by 1850. Kingsand was still in Devon until 1844 and the boundary stone between the two counties is still opposite the Halfway Hotel, separating Turk Town (Cawsand) and the North Rockers (Kingsand). Intense rivalry between the two villages continued well into the 20th century.

Maker was united with Rame parish in 1943 to form Maker-with-Rame parish, which for civil purposes, is now part of the Cornwall County Council.

Further information on Maker is available.

Most parish and church description(s) on these pages are from Lake's Parochial History of the County of Cornwall by J Polsue (Truro, 1867 - 1873)


Rev. Geoffrey Blanchard White - Maker with Rame (notes towards a Parish History). (Typescripts in Plymouth Local Studies Library 972R 374 - probably copies also in Truro). (Full of really good information with trancripts of property deeds etc. which would be useful to family historians).


The Cornwall Family History Society have not yet published Monumental Inscriptions for this Parish.


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:

Church History

Church Records

Civil Registration

The parish of Maker is in the St Germans Registration District and has been since 1st July 1837; there were sub-districts at Antony, St Germans and Saltash but they have now been abolished. Parishes within the district were: Antony, Botusfleming, Landrake, Landulph, Maker, Millbrook, Pillaton, Quethiock, Rame, St. Erney, St. Germans, St. John's, St. Mellion, St. Stephen's, Saltash, Sheviock, Torpoint.

The Superintendant Registrar of St Germans can be contacted at: Ploughastel Drive, Saltash, Cornwall, PL12 6DL. Tel: 01752 842624.

Description & Travel



OPC Assistance.

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 Maker ecclesiastical parish:


The first Lord Mount Edgcumbe built Mount Edgcumbe House at Cremyll in 1552, but unfortunately it was bombed in the Second World War. The house was restored in 1960, but it is the magnificent gardens overlooking Plymouth Sound which are the main attraction for visitors. The Edgcumbe family have been major employers and benefactors of the parish since that early time, to the present day. The house and gardens are now jointly owned by Plymouth City and Cornwall County Councils.

In March 1587 a Spanish pinnace landed a raiding Party at Cawsand which tried to burn down the village, but one man with a musket put them to flight. In the Civil War Maker Church tower was fortified by the Royalist garrison of Mount Edgcumbe and was captured by the Plymouth Parliamentary forces in May 1644. For the next two centuries the Bay was a major anchorage for the British Navy - Nelson for instance in 1801. In the 18th century Maker Church tower was an Admiralty signal station with its own crew, passing messages by semaphore to Devonport Dockyard. Massive Fortifications of many centuries still dot the peninsula.

Useful books include:

Campbell-Culver, Margaret. Mount Edgcumbe. Maker: Mount Edgcumbe House (1993) 35p : col ill ,maps [ISBN 0952188007] [Westcountry Studies Library - px728.8/MAK/MOU]
Carne, Tony. Cornwall's Forgotten Corner- including Cawsand, Kingsand, Milbrook, St John & Sheviock, Rame, Tony Carne (1985) 132 p. [ISBN: 0 946143 13 7] [Kingsand and Millbrook make up the parish of Maker (formerly Devon). Mount Edgecumbe, Cremyl, etc., figure quite highly.]
Crossing, William. Mount Edgcumbe Park: historical - descriptive - pictorial. Plymouth: Hoyten & Cole [1900?] 17p. [Westcountry Studies Library - 712.5/PLY/CRO]
Manpower Services Commission. Survey of Mount Edgcumbe, Cornwall. Truro: Cornwall County Council (1984) v,63p : maps [Plymouth Library - 72]
Warwick, Jill and Warwick, Glyn, (Ed.). As it Was, Jill Warwick, Maker with Rame Women's Inst. (Printed by Liskeard Printing Company) (2000) 204 p.
A walk round Mount Edgecumbe (2nd ed.) Plymouth Dock: L.Congdon (1805) 36p. [Westcountry Studies Library - sB/PLY 1/1805/PLY]
History and guide to Mount Edgecumbe House & Country Park. Cornwall County Council (19--) 15p : ill [Plymouth Library - 728.8MOU.
The parish of Maker with Rame and its parish churches (rev ed.) Guildford: Home Words Ltd (1966)
Two towers: a short history of the churches and parish of Maker with Rame. [Maker?]: [Maker Church?] [1990]


Poorhouses, Poor Law, etc.

Maker parish was part of the St Germans Union for Poor Law administration and parish relief.


Population figures are of Maker-with-Rame; some figures relate only to Maker. Millbrook parish was created from Maker in 1867.

  • Population in 1801 - 2595 persons
  • Population in 1811 - 4656 persons
  • Population in 1821 - 2603 persons
  • Population in 1831 - 2441 persons
  • Population in 1841 - 2369 plus 1561 persons in Maker
  • Population in 1851 - 2357 persons
  • Population in 1861 - 3778 plus 2986 persons in Maker
  • Population in 1871 - 4067 plus 2938 persons in Maker, and 224 persons in Maker Barracks
  • Population in 1881 - 2082 persons
  • Population in 1891 - 2193, plus 3304 persons in Maker
  • Population in 1901 - 3052 persons
  • Population in 1911 - 1919 persons
  • Population in 1921 - 3309 persons
  • Population in 1931 - 1378 persons (Maker)
  • Population in 1951 - 1408 persons (Maker)
  • Population in 1961 - 1441 persons (Maker)
  • Population in 1971 - 1145 persons (Maker)
  • Population in 1981 - 1120 persons (Maker)
  • Population in 1991 - 1043 persons (Maker)
  • Population in 2001 - 1071 persons (Maker-with-Rame)
  • Population in 2011 - 1020 persons (Maker-with-Rame)


The Rame History Group aims to research, record and promote interest in the heritage of the Rame Peninsula. The group meets every month in the Congregational Hall.


The parish comprises 1297 acres of land, 6 acres of tidal water and 148 acres of foreshore.

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