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Help and advice for Rame

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The parish of Rame, (Cornish: Penn an Hordh), is in the extreme south-east of Cornwall, on a peninsula to the west of Plymouth Sound. It is situated in the Deanery of East, and in the southern division of the Hundred of East. It is bounded on the north by the parishes of St Johns and Maker, and on the east, south and west by the sea. The church, situated on high ground, has long served as a navigational aid to mariners. There is also a ruined chapel dedicated to St Michael and traces of ancient defensive works. Polhawn Battery was a strong fortress on the southern cliffs of the parish, effectively commanding Whitsand Bay and the surrounding land approaches. There are four miles of sandy beach on the west coast of the headland, which in the past have witnessed many shipwrecks and are now sprinkled with shacks and bungalows.

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

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.
Specific census information for this parish is available as follows:

  • 1841.
    • The 1841 Census of Rame (HO107/135), Enumeration District 9, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
    • The 1841 census for this parish has also been filmed by the LDS church - film No. 241259.
  • 1851.
    • The 1851 Census of Rame (HO107/1900), Enumeration District 3, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
    • The New Zealand Society of Genealogists have compiled separate surname indexes of the 1851 Census for each Cornish registration district; Rame is listed in Volume 8. The booklets are available in Cornwall at the Cornwall Centre, (formerly known as the Cornish Studies Library), and is also available in the Cornwall FHS Library from which it can be purchased.
  • 1861. The 1861 Census of Rame (RG9/1522), Enumeration District 5e, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
  • 1871.
    • The 1871 Census of Rame is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project as follows:
  • 1881. The 1881 Census of Rame (RG11/2279), Enumeration District 5, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
  • 1891. The 1891 Census of Rame (RG12/1806), Enumeration Districts 5 and 5 (Barracks), is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.


You can also perform a more selective search for churches in the Rame area or see them printed on a map.


Church History

  • Anglican. The parish church is located in OS Grid Square SX4249 and it is dedicated to St Germanus.
    The little chapel of St. Michael (now in ruins) on the summit of Rame Head, was licensed for Mass in 1397, and is probably on the site of a much earlier, Celtic, hermitage. Earl Ordulf, owner of vast estates in the West Country and uncle of King Ethelred, gave Rame to Tavistock Abbey (which he had founded) in AD 981. The church was dedicated to St. Germanus on 15th October 1259 and, again on 10th October 1321. St Germanus was the fighting German bishop who is supposed to have landed in the neighbourhood when he came to England to suppress the Pelagian heresy in about AD 400.
    The church is all built of rough slate. The first stone building was that consecrated in 1259. It comprises a chancel, nave, south aisle, north transept and vestry. The arcade consists of five low fourch-centred arches supported on monolith granite pillars. The slender, unbuttressed tower with its broached spire (an unusual feature in a Cornish church), the north wall, north aisle and the chancel are all probably of this date, when the church was cruciform in shape. The south transept went in a 15th century extension with a south aisle and arcade added and some new windows. The south aisle wagon roof is original, and some pews survive from the 16th century, with Devon-style tracery on the bends-ends. There were restorations in 1848 and 1886, when slates replaced the stone-shingled roof. The church still has no electricity, and is lit by candles.
    Cawsand was in Rame parish (while Kingsand was in Maker) and the moves to establish a church nearer the people eventually led to the building in Rame village of St. Andrew's Church in 1878. Since the two parishes were united in 1943, St. Andrew's has continued to serve as the church in the village.
  • Non-Conformist. The united villages of Cawsand (which is in Cornwall) and Kingsand (which is in Devon) contained a Wesleyan chapel and an Independant chapel.

Church Records

Indices and transcripts of the Baptism, Marriage and Burial registers of the Parish of Rame, 1653 - 1812 compiled by Rev. Geoffrey Blanchard White , MA. in Harris, G & F.L. (eds) Essays and Notes on the Rame Peninsula 1963. [This is a typescript of which bound copies were deposited in various local libraries including Plymouth, Truro etc but most have vanished. One survives in Torpoint Library. It includes essays on the Vallack family and other wider material. It is a Carbon copy and needs copying onto disc etc].
Indexes and Transcripts of the Baptisms and Deaths for the parishes of Maker and Rame, 1813 -1843. Typed copies held in Mount Edgcumbe House History Files. [Anon. but almost certainly by the Rev. White]. NB: there are no marriage records included here.

Specific information on extant Church Records for this parish is available as follows:

  • LDS Church Records.
    • The LDS Church batch numbers for Rame are: C053031, P022661. These are searchable by surname.
    • The IGI coverage of this parish is 1653 - 1812.
  • The Cornwall Record Office holdings: Baptisms 1653 - 1812, Burials 1653 - 1812, Marriages 1653 - 1837, Boyd's Marriage Index 1619 - 1673, BTs 1619 - 1673, Non-Conformist records 1810 - 1837.
  • Baptisms.
    • Baptisms 1675 to 1772 (Bishop's transcripts) for this parish are available on-line through the OPC search Facility - (C-PROP).
    • The Cornish Forefathers' Society have published on CD baptisms 1714 to 1841 for this parish which can be purchased on Parish Chest.
  • Marriages.
    • Marriages 1675 to 1796 (Bishop's transcripts) for this parish are available on-line through the OPC search Facility - (C-PROP).
    • The Cornwall Family History Society have published transcripts of: Parish Marriages 1619 to 1837, which is available in Book, CD or downloadable .pdf file formats.
  • Burials.
    • Burials 1675 to 1772 (Bishop's transcripts) for this parish are available on-line through the OPC search Facility - (C-PROP).
    • The Cornwall Family History Society have published transcripts of: Parish Burials 1813 to 1837, which is available in Book format.

Civil Registration

The parish of Rame 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 and Travel

    You can see pictures of Rame which are provided by:



    Ask for a calculation of the distance from Rame to another place.

    Click here for a list of nearby places.



    OPC Assistance.

    • 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.

    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 Rame ecclesiastical parish:

    You can see the administrative areas in which Rame has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.



    Apprenticeship Indentures for Rame (1812 - 1836) can be found in the Cornwall Record Office.


    Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.

    • Rame parish was part of the St Germans Union for Poor Law administration and parish relief.
    • Overseers' Accounts (1819 to 1835) are available in the Cornwall Record Office.


    The population figures given below are mostly of Maker and Rame together unless stated separately.

    • Population in 1801 - 2595 persons (904 persons in Rame)
    • Population in 1811 - 4656 persons (978 persons in Rame)
    • Population in 1821 - 2603 persons (807 persons in Rame)
    • Population in 1831 - 2441 persons (896 persons in Rame)
    • Population in 1841 - 2369 (800 persons in Rame)
    • Population in 1851 - 2357 persons (741 persons in Rame)
    • Population in 1861 - 3778 (792 persons in Rame)
    • Population in 1871 - 4067, (856 persons in Rame and 47 persons in Rame Barracks)
    • Population in 1881 - 2082 persons
    • Population in 1891 - 2193, including 865 persons in Rame
    • Population in 1901 - 3052 persons
    • Population in 1911 - 1919 persons
    • Population in 1921 - 3309 persons
    • Population in 1931 - 1378 persons
    • Population in 1951 - 1408 persons
    • Population in 1961 - 1441 persons
    • Population in 1971 - 1145 persons
    • Population in 1981 - 305 persons (Rame only)
    • Population in 1991 - 360 persons (Rame only)
    • 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 1272 acres of land and 112 acres of foreshore.