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St Anthony in Roseland

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The parish of St Anthony-in-Roseland, (Cornish: Sen Anta), is situated in the Deanery and Hundred of Powder. It is bounded on the south by the English Channel, on the west by the estuary of Falmouth harbour, on the north by St Mawes creek, and on the east by Gerrans. It is believed that the parish was once an island. From the narrow isthmus by which it is joined to Gerrans, to the point of the entrance to Falmouth harbour, it is about two and a half miles long, by half a mile wide. The parish is named after St Anthony. The Roseland is thought to mean "the land of the promentory" Rhos being the old Cornish for 'Headland'.
The village is situated on the Roseland Peninsula to the east of the Carrick Roads and about 9 miles south-west of Tregony. It is not mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086.
St Anthony-in-Roseland Parish is in the Carrick district, near to the mouth of the River Fal and the Carrick Roads. The area is a rocky peninsula of mainly farmland with a prominent lighthouse, built in 1835 and still operating, and a former gun battery on its South Western promontory. The main family which has been associated with this parish was SPRY. There are very few houses in this small parish.

The parish no longer exists as a civic unit; it was incorporated into the parish of Gerrans in 1934.

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 OPC has transcribed and photographed all the Monumental inscriptions in St Anthony Church and burial ground. These are on-line.



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 St Anthony-in-Roseland (HO107/147), Enumeration District 3 and Merchant Shipping, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
  • 1851.
    • The 1851 Census of St Anthony-in-Roseland (HO107/1909), Enumeration District 5, 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; St Anthony in Roseland is listed in Volume 17. 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.
  • 1861. The 1861 Census of St Anthony-in-Roseland (RG9/1553), Enumeration District 1, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
  • 1871. The 1871 Census of St Anthony-in-Roseland (RG10/2274), Enumeration District 1, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
  • 1881. The 1881 Census of St Anthony-in-Roseland (RG11/2307), Enumeration District 1, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
  • 1891. The 1891 Census of St Anthony-in-Roseland (RG12/1827), Enumeration District 1, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
  • 1901. The 1901 Census of St Anthony-in-Roseland (RG13/2217), Enumeration District 1, is available on-line courtesy of the OPC.
  • 1911. The 1901 Census of St Anthony-in-Roseland (RG14/13814), Enumerations Districts 1 and 2, is available on-line courtesy of the OPC.

Church History

  • Anglican. During the 12th century, much of the land at St Anthony was owned by the Augustinian Priory at Plympton, Devon, and it was during this time that the Prior established the church here. The parish church is located in OS Grid Square SW8532 and was dedicated to St Antonius by Walter Bronescombe, Bishop of Exeter, on October 3rd, 1259, replacing an earlier Norman Church built about 1150. This church had, by 1860, become very dilapidated; the nave was in a ruinous condition, and the chancel and tower had gone altogether. This church was originally cruciformed, consisting of chancel, nave and transepts, with a central tower, supported on four acutely pointed arches. Whether the tower was removed by accident ior during the Reformation of Henry VIII, has not been determined. The chancel had never been rebuilt, so the church had become in the shape of the letter "T". It has been suggested that it was thought to be 'the best example in the county of what a parish church was like in the 12th and 13th centuries'.
    In the 1860's, the church was rebuilt and restored. It is situated on the border of a navigable creek which separates it from St Mawes, and near it formerly stood a small priory, subordinate to that of Plympton in Devon.
  • Non-Conformist. There is a Wesleyan Chapel in the parish.

Church Records


Civil Registration

The parish of St Anthony-in-Roseland has been in the Truro Registration District continuously from 1st July 1837 until it was incorporated into the parish of Gerrans in 1934. 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 are: 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.


Description and Travel

  • The OPC has placed on-line more pictures of St Anthony-in-Roseland. There is also a page of postcards covering views of Gerrans and St Anthony.

You can see pictures of St Anthony in Roseland which are provided by:



Ask for a calculation of the distance from St Anthony in Roseland 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.


Historical Geography

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



Apprenticeship Indentures for St Anthony-in-Roseland (1786 - 1800) can be found in the Cornwall Record Office.


Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.

  • St Anthony-in-Roseland parish was part of the Truro Union for Poor Law administration and parish relief.
  • Overseers' Accounts (1728 to 1756), Settlement papers (1794) and Bastardy Bonds (1805), are available in the Cornwall Record Office.


  • Population in 1801 - 163 persons
  • Population in 1811 - 157 persons
  • Population in 1821 - 179 persons
  • Population in 1831 - 144 persons
  • Population in 1841 - 144 persons
  • Population in 1851 - 171 persons
  • Population in 1861 - 169 persons
  • Population in 1871 - 115 persons
  • Population in 1881 - 120 persons
  • Population in 1891 - 153 persons
  • Population in 1901 - 117 persons
  • Population in 1911 - 105 persons
  • Population in 1921 - 113 persons
  • Population in 1931 - 100 persons

Population figures from 1933 are included in those of Gerrans.


Religion and 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 Anthony-in-Roseland are available on-line.



The parish comprised 753 acres of land and 101 acres of foreshore.



A transcription of the Hearth Tax returns for Gerrans & St Anthony is available on-line..