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St Martin By Looe

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1868 - The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland

"ST. MARTIN BY LOOE, a parish in the hundred of West, county Cornwall. It includes the borough of East Looe, its post town. The parish is bounded on the W. by Looe Harbour, and on the S. by the English Channel. The land is almost wholly arable, except about 250 acres of wood land. The living is a rectory* with the curacy of East Looe annexed, in the diocese of Exeter, value £481. The church, dedicated to St. Martin, is an ancient stone structure. The Wesleyans have a place of worship. There is a National school.

"EAST LOOE, a chapelry, seaport, and incorporated market town, having separate jurisdiction, but locally in the parish of St. Martin by Looe, hundred of West, county Cornwall, 16 miles W. of Plymouth, 8 S.E. of the railway station at Liskeard, and 232 W.S.W. of London. It is situated on the eastern bank of Looe Bay, near the mouth of the river Loos, over which is a modern stone bridge connecting the boroughs of East and West Loos. It was formerly a place of importance, and sent two members to parliament, but was disfranchised by the Reform Act. It received its first charter of incorporation from Elizabeth in 1687, and is now governed by a corporation consisting of a mayor, recorder, town clerk, and 12 burgesses. Its trade was so considerable in former times that it furnished 20 ships to the siege of Calais in the reign of Edward III.; but it has recently much decayed, notwithstanding the construction of the Liskeard and Loos canal, which facilitates the transmission of goods to the Cornwall railway, at Liskeard. The pilchard fishery was one of the chief sources of its former prosperity. There is an excellent harbour and quay The chief business is at present in the coasting trade-the exports being tin, copper, and lead ore, bark, timber, salt, and pilchards; the imports, coal, culm, and limestone. Two courts leet are held annually, and a borough court on every third Monday from Michaelmas Day. The living, with West Loos, is a perpetual curacy in the diocese of Exeter, value £75, in the patronage of the bishop. The church of East Loos, dedicated to St. Mary, was rebuilt in 1806, with the exception of its low castellated tower. The Wesleyans and Independents have each a chapel, and the Society of Friends a meetinghouse. There is a free school for boys, and a National school for girls. Wednesday and Saturday are market days. Fairs are held in February and October for cattle. There are remains of a bridge of 13 arches, built in the 14th century, crossing the estuary of the Loos, which was 141 yards in length, and only 6 feet wide.