Devoran, (Cornish: Devryon), is in the Deanery and Hundred of Powder. The parish was created on 17th January 1873 from Feock parish to serve an increasing population.
The parish is named after the Cornish word for water, 'Dowr', and lies near the point where two rivers meet. It lies about 4 miles south-west of Truro on Restronguet Creek. The land is mostly farmed and many residents work in the nearby City of Truro. Devoran once almost became a town; the village lies at the bottom of the Bissoe valley and at the top of Restronguet Creek. It is hard to imagine now that this tranquil place was once a hive of industry having a railway line to the mines, extensive wharves, and boatyards with ships and barges coming and going in the creek. It was once an important shipping place for the importation of timber, coals and iron, for the mines, and for the exportation of copper and other ores.
Devoran's brief industrial history began in the early 19th century when a railway was constructed from the Gwennap mines to Point, where the copper ore could be taken aboard ship. The trains would then return with coal and whatever else was needed for the mines. By the 1840s wharves had been built all along the creek from Devoran to Point, together with boatyards, repair shops and housing for the people. Meanwhile, however, something not so good had been taking place. Waste washed down from the plethora of tin mines in the surrounding countryside was steadily building up and the tidal creek was being choked. Tin had always been extracted from the Fal river area but the heavy industrialisation of the 19th century hugely accelerated the silting up process. Then, a little later and the final blow to all this enterprise, prices fell. Discovery of cheaper tin in other parts of the world made it increasingly uneconomical in Cornwall and by the early 20th century, the port had ground to a halt.
Today Restronguet Creek is a very peaceful place, but there is a lot less water in the bottom.
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 - 1181 entries.
Census information for this parish (1881 - 1901) is held in the Cornwall Record Office. The Cornwall Family History Society offers a census search service for its members.
Specific census information for this parish is available as follows:
- 1841. In the 1841 Census, Devoran was enumerated as part of Feock.
- 1851. In the 1851 Census, Devoran was enumerated as part of Feock.
- 1861. In the 1861 Census, Devoran was enumerated as part of Feock.
- 1871. The 1871 Census of Devoran (RG10/2289) was enumerated as part of Feock. However, Enumeration Districts 17, 18 and 19 [including Merchant Shipping], which relate to Devoran, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
- 1881. The 1891 Census of Devoran (RG11/2314), Enumeration Districts 17, 18 [including Merchant Shipping] and 19, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
- 1891. The 1891 Census of Devoran (RG12/1832), Enumeration Districts 17 to 19, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
- Anglican. The parish church is located in OS Grid Square SW7939. There was a church here in 1264 which was dedicated by St Feoca. By 1857, there was a chapel dedicated to St John in Devoran, which was built at a cost of £1,425. The present building was dedicated to St John & St Petroc in 1873. A new organ was provided in October 1903. The present church is a beautifully structured building in the early English style, with a square tower.
- Non-Conformist. The Wesleyan Methodists also had a chapel here, and another in Carnon Downs, which was built in 1825.
- The Cornwall Record Office holdings: Baptisms 1873 - 1947, Burials 1873 - 1951, Marriages 1873 - 1969.
- Banns. Banns 1873 to 1911 for this parish are available on-line through the OPC search Facility - (C-PROP).
The parish of Devoran has been in the Truro Registration District since its creation. 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 were: 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.
- Photographs of Devoran are available.
- Ask for a calculation of the distance from Devoran to another place.
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.
The place-names below were taken mainly from Dr. Grover's unpublished typescript and Charles Henderson's works, both in the Library at the Truro Museum. We are specially grateful to Mr. Richard JENKIN for his personal assistance, and have also studied works by Morton Nance and P. A. S. Pool. [Source of extracted material: Feock with Devoran and Carnon Downs In The 19th Century, Part II; copyright by the Extra Mural Department, University of Exeter, 1973]
- Feock occurs as Ecclesiam Sancte Feoce in 1264 (S. R.); later spellings vary considerably and it was first spelt with a 'k' in 1394. The name is said to come from the Irish saint Fiacc or Fiaco.
- Devoran is mentioned as Deffrion in 1278 (Ass); the name is a derivative of dever or dover meaning water (Cornish dour) the old name for the creek.
- Carnon Downs occurs in the 1683 Recovery Rolls and means Rocky Downs, a mixture of Cornish and English.
You can see the administrative areas in which Devoran has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.
- Map of the Truro Registration District in which the parish lies.
You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SW796391 (Lat/Lon: 50.21077, -5.090384), Devoran which are provided by:
- Google Maps
- StreetMap (Current Ordnance Survey maps)
- Bing (was Multimap)
- OldMaps (Old Ordnance Survey maps.)
- Old Maps Online (Other old maps.)
- National Library of Scotland (Old Ordnance Survey maps)
- Vision of Britain (Click "Historical units & statistics" for administrative areas.)
- English Jurisdictions in 1851 (Unfortunately the LDS have removed the facility to enable us to specify a starting location, you will need to search yourself on their map.)
- Magic (Geographic information) (Click + on map if it doesn't show)
- GeoHack (Links to on-line maps and location specific services.)
Devoran parish became part of the Truro Union for Poor Law administration and parish relief on its creation.
Created from part of Feock parish 1873; population figures before this date are included with Feock.