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The parish of Manaccan, (Cornish: Managhan), Monachan, Monathon, and, anciently, Minster, is situated in the Meneage district of the Deanery and Hundred of Kerrier. It is bounded on the north by the Helford estuary, on the east by St Anthony, and on the south and west by St Keverne and St Martins. Manaccan lies on the south of the Helford River, between St Martin's and St. Anthony. It's ancient name was 'Minstor'. Richard Polwhele, Rector of Manaccan in 1793, wrote largely on the antiquities and history of Devon and Cornwall.

In this parish is Helford, which was originally a small trading village. From here is a ferry across to Passage House, now known as 'Helford Passage', in the parish of Mawnan. Titanium, or macannanite, as it was then called, was discovered in this parish in 1791 by the Rev. William Gregor. Gold also exists in the black sand which yields manaccanite, but not enough in quantity to pay for working.

Manaccan is a hillside parish set in pleasant countryside to the south of the Helford River. The church is dedicated to unknown saint, referred to as 'Sancta Manaca' in 1259. During the Napoleonic wars, Captain Bligh of Bounty fame was carrying out research for the Admiralty in the Helford River and was arrested as a suspected spy. He was locked in the coal cellar of the Rev. Richard Polwhele, but eventually released when he was able to prove his identity. Despite his treatment Bligh and Polwhele became friends and remained in touch for several years.

Besides the Churchtown, the only other village of size in the parish is Helford. Helford now is a very attractive holiday area with many cottages, a sailing club and much sailing 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)


The Cornwall Family History Society have published Monumental Inscriptions for the Parish Church


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 Manaccan was originally in the Helston Registration District; there were sub-districts at Breage, Crowan, Helston, St Keverne and Wendron. It is now in the Kerrier Registration District. Parishes in this registration district are: Breage, Crowan, Cury, Germoe, Gunwalloe, Grade, Helston, Landewednack, Manaccan, Mawgan in Meneage, Mullion, Ruan Major, Ruan Minor, St. Anthony in Meneage, St. Keverne, St. Martin in Meneage, Sithney, Wendron.

The address of the Registration Office is: The Willows, Church Street, Helston, TR13 8NJ.
Tel: 01326 562848.

Description & Travel



Poorhouses, Poor Law, etc.

Manaccan parish was part of the Helston Union for Poor Law administration and parish relief.


  • Population in 1801 - 489 persons
  • Population in 1811 - 506 persons
  • Population in 1821 - 591 persons
  • Population in 1831 - 654 persons
  • Population in 1841 - 569 persons
  • Population in 1851 - 563 persons
  • Population in 1861 - 505 persons
  • Population in 1871 - 436 persons
  • Population in 1881 - 522 persons
  • Population in 1891 - 379 persons
  • Population in 1901 - 372 persons
  • Population in 1911 - 357 persons
  • Population in 1921 - 350 persons
  • Population in 1931 - 318 persons
  • Population in 1951 - 329 persons
  • Population in 1961 - 361 persons
  • Population in 1971 - 289 persons
  • Population in 1981 - 300 persons
  • Population in 1991 - 301 persons
  • Population in 2001 - 299 persons
  • Population in 2011 - 321 persons

Religion & Religious Life


The parish comprises 1746 acres of land, 113 acres of tidal water and 34 acres of foreshore.

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