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The parish of Sancreed (Cornish: Eglossancrekres), is named after the holy place upon which the church now stands. There is a legend St Sancreed, patron saint of the parish church, killed his father by accident and, in contrition, lived as a swineherd. This parish is in the centre of the Lands End peninsula. It is situated in the Deanery and Hundred of Penwith, and is bounded on the north by St Just, on the east by Madron, on the south by Paul and on the west by St Buryan. Although not on the coast, there is the large stretch of water of the Drift Reservoir to the east of the village, which is now much used by visitors for fishing and bird-watching.

The advowson of Sancreed appears to have been attached originally to the Manor of Bosvenning, held by the Earl of Gloucester. Further information on Sancreed is available. Principal hamlets are the Churchtown, Drift, Sellan, Brane and Newbridge.


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Census information for parishes in this town (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 Sancreed has been in the Penzance Registration District continuously from 1st July 1837. There were originally sub-districts at Marazion, Penzance, St Buryan, St Just, St Ives and Uny-Lelant but these have now been abolished. Parishes within the district are: Gulval, Ludgvan, Madron, Marazion, Morvah, Penzance, Perranuthnoe, St. Buryan, St. Erth, St. Hilary, St. Ives, St. Just in Penwith, St. Levan, St. Michael's Mount, St. Paul, Sancreed, Sennen, Towednack, Uny-Lelant, Wolfe Rock Lighthouse, and Zennor. The Superintendant Registrar can be contacted at: Alphington House, Alverton Place, Penzance, TR18 4JJ. Tel: 01736 330093.

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Description & Travel

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The Manorial Documents Register (MDR) maintained by the Historic Manuscripts Commission notes that, so far as can be established, the parish of Sancreed contained the manors of Bosvenning, Sancreed and Tregonebris.

The MDR contains the following information for these manors:

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Poorhouses, Poor Law, etc.

Sancreed parish was part of the Penzance Union for Poor Law administration and parish relief.

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  • Population in 1801 - 782 persons
  • Population in 1811 - 790 persons
  • Population in 1821 - 1001 persons
  • Population in 1831 - 1069 persons
  • Population in 1841 - 1248 persons
  • Population in 1851 - 1398 persons
  • Population in 1861 - 1233 persons
  • Population in 1871 - 1182 persons
  • Population in 1881 - 937 persons
  • Population in 1891 - 867 persons
  • Population in 1901 - 784 persons
  • Population in 1911 - 805 persons
  • Population in 1921 - 724 persons
  • Population in 1931 - 679 persons
  • Population in 1951 - 589 persons
  • Population in 1961 - 568 persons
  • Population in 1971 - 520 persons
  • Population in 1981 - 615 persons (including 425 in Sancreed and Drift villages)
  • Population in 1991 - 660 persons (including 455 in Sancreed and Drift villages)
  • Population in 2001 - 628 persons
  • Population in 2011 - 625 persons

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Probate Records

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The Penwith Local History Group aims:

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The parish comprises 4608 acres of land.

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Entries from the Hearth Tax 1662 - 1664 for Sancreed are available on-line.

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