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St Buryan

St Buryan (or Buryan), (Cornish: Eglosveryan), is in the Deanery and Hundred of Penwith. It is in the Land's End district and is located in the far west of Cornwall. It is bounded on the north by the parishes of Sancreed and St Just, by Sennen and St Leven (to which is closely connected) on the west, Paul to the east, and on the south by the sea. The parish is named after Saint Beriana.

St. Buryan (or Burian) is recorded in the Domesday book of 1086 as Eglosburrie which, in old Cornish, means the church of St. Burian. Beside the Churchtown, the villages are: Bolleit, Boscawen-oon, Boscawen-rose, Penberth Cove, Alsa, Rosemodress, Selna, Treeve, Tregagwith, Trelew, Tregurno, Trevorgans and Trevorrian. The parish lies mainly on granite although, in general, it is fertile and well-cultivated. St Buryan was a Royal Peculiar and came under the Arundells of Lanherne on behalf of the King. The Arundells were Lords of the Manor for something like 39 separate Manors.

In the 18th century Tonkin wrote of St Buryan: This parish is of a large extent, and the land is generally good and lying very warm on the south sea which, with the desires of living quiet, has induced several gentlemen to settle themselves in this remote corner of the Kingdom, where they may liberally entertain all such out of curiosity come to visit Land's End.

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)



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 St Buryan 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.

Description & Travel




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 St Buryan ecclesiastical parish:


The parish of St Buryan contained the manors of:



Poorhouses, Poor Law, etc.


  • Population in 1801 - 1161 persons
  • Population in 1811 - 1181 persons
  • Population in 1821 - 1495 persons
  • Population in 1831 - 1707 persons
  • Population in 1841 - 1911 persons
  • Population in 1851 - 1658 persons
  • Population in 1861 - 1428 persons
  • Population in 1871 - 1437 persons
  • Population in 1881 - 1364 persons
  • Population in 1891 - 1288 persons
  • Population in 1901 - 1210 persons
  • Population in 1911 - 1236 persons
  • Population in 1921 - 1132 persons
  • Population in 1931 - 1145 persons
  • Population in 1951 - 1072 persons
  • Population in 1961 - 977 persons
  • Population in 1971 - 971 persons
  • Population in 1981 - 1000 persons
  • Population in 1991 - 1170 persons
  • Population in 2001 - 1215 persons
  • Population in 2011 - 1377 persons

Religion & Religious Life

In the May of 1641 it was agreed and ordered that every Member of the House of Commons and House of Lords should make a protestation (declaration of loyalty) to the crown. The Protestation was printed and then distributed by the Members to their counties. The Protestation was to be made by everyone and the Rectors, Churchwardens and Overseers of the Poor, had to appear before the Justices of the Peace in their Hundred to make their protestation and, on returning to their parishes, any two of them were to witness the taking of the Protestation Oath by all males over the age of 18 years. All names were listed and anyone who refused was to be noted.

The Protestation Returns of 1642 for St Buryan are available on-line.


The Penwith Local History Group aims:


The parish comprises 6972 acres of land, 3 acres of water and 18 acres of foreshore.

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