Tintagel, (Cornish: Tre Venydh), sometimes Tintagel with Bossiney, is situated in the Deanery of Trigg Minor and the Hundred of Lesnewth. It is bounded on the north by the sea and Trevalga, on the east by Trevalga and Minster, on the south by the detached part of Lanteglos and St Teath, and on the west by the sea. The parish is on the north coast of Cornwall between Port Isaac and Boscastle. Strictly speaking the name of the village is Trevena, the name Tintagel referring only to the headland. Tintagel is perhaps best known for its castle ruins and alleged connection with the legendary King Arthur, although unfortunately little evidence has been found to support this story.

The first castle was built in the middle of the 12th century on the site of a Celtic monastery, long after the time King Arthur was supposed to have lived. The owner at this time was Reginald, Earl of Cornwall, Henry I's illegitimate son. However, it does appear Tintagel was the home of Cornish Royalty in the past and a place of some importance. The united borough of Trevena and Bossiney, commonly called Tintagel, returned two M.P.'s from 1552 until 1832, when the Reform Act did away with such 'Rotten Boroughs'. In 1584, the famous circumnavigator, Sir Francis Drake, was one of these.

A local family, by the name of Wood, lived at Trevillet in this parish. One descendant of this family called Matthew Wood, became Lord Mayor of London in 1816.

The village has several shops and the Old Post Office built in the 14th century is a constant tourist attraction. The nearby village of Tregatta is reputed at one time to have had nine public houses and eight places of worship. At Trevellet there is an old water mill built in 1472; the old workings of which can be seen in what is now a cafe. Besides the Churchtown, other villages in the parish are Trenaile, Trewithin, and Trewarmet.

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 - 1082 entries.



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 Tintagel (with Bossiney) (HO107/140) is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project as follows:
  • 1851.
    • The 1851 Census of Tintagel (HO107/1898), Enumeration District 7a, 7b and 7c, 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; Tintagel is listed in Volume 4. 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 Tintagel (RG9/1515), Enumeration District 8, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
  • 1871 The 1871 Census of Tintagel (RG10/2218), Enumeration Districts 8 and 9, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
  • 1881. The 1881 Census of Tintagel (RG11/2272), Enumeration Districts 8 and 9, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.
  • 1891. The 1891 Census of Tintagel (RG12/1799), Enumeration District 7, is available on-line from the Cornwall Online Census project.

Church History

  • Anglican. The parish church is located in OS Grid Square SX0588 and was dedicated to St Merteriane (or Materiana). It comprises a chancel, nave, north and south transepts, and a vestry (formerly a Lady Chapel). The entrances are by north and south porches; the latter has a perfect Norman doorway, and the former has several Saxon features. The tower has three stages and is finished with battlements. The whole church was substantially renovated in 1870.
    Two extra chapels (to St Piran and St Denis) were licensed in Tintagel on 8th May 1457, but these no longer exist. There is also the remains of an old chapel at Trethevy (which was dedicated to St Nectin), and which is located near Tintagel; it is very close to the waterfall known as St Nectan's falls.

    A further chapel at Treknow was opened in 1929; details about the plans of this church are available on-line.
  • Roman Catholics. The Mission of Tintagel, like many others in Cornwall, was founded by the Canons Regular of the Lateran from Bodmin. The Church of St. Paul was built in 1968. Of particular interest inside the modern building is the Cornish serpentine statue of the Blessed Virgin, Stations of the Cross carved out of local wood, and the stained glass made by the monks at Buckfast.
    On the left of the Church the windows depict Calvary, the spear of Longinus and the Holy Grail. It was King Arthur(of Tintagel) who, according to legend,sent his knights out to seek the Holy Grail, the Chalice used by Joseph of Arimathea to collect some of the Sacred Blood from the wounded side of Christ. Behind the altar there are two windows illustrating two coats-of-arms of the pre-Reformation Priory of Austin Canons, taken over by the CRL in 1881 when they took up residence in Bodmin. On the right of the Church, the stained glass is again rich in imagery of Cornish tradition.
  • Non-Conformist. There were also a Wesleyan Methodist chapel at Trevena, a Bible Christian chapel was located at Trewarmet, and another, built in 1860, was situated at Bossiney.

Church Records

  • LDS Church Records.
    • The LDS Church batch numbers for Tintagel are: C025291, E025291, M025291. These are searchable by surname.
    • The IGI coverage of this parish is 1599 - 1812.
  • The Cornwall Record Office holdings: Baptisms 1569 - 1980, Burials 1546 - 1978, Marriages 1588 - 1910, Boyd's Marriage Index 1588 - 1812, Pallot's Marriage Index 1800 - 1812.
  • The Cornwall Family History Society have published on-line transcripts of:
    • Pre 1813 Marriages
    • 1813-37 Marriages
    • 1813-37 Burials
  • Baptisms
    • Baptisms 1837 to 1911 for this parish are available on-line through the OPC search Facility - (C-PROP).
    • Tintagel Free Methodist Chapel baptisms 1903 to 1911 are available on-line through the OPC search Facility - (C-PROP).
    • The Cornish Forefathers' Society have published on CD, baptisms 1698 to 1845 for this parish which can be purchased on Parish Chest.
  • Marriages.
  • Burials.

Civil Registration

Although originally in the Camelford Registration District, the parish of Tintagel is now in the Bodmin Registration District; there were sub-districts at Boscastle and Camelford but these are now abolished. Parishes within the Camelford district were: Advent, Davidstow, Forrabury, Lanteglos, Lesnewth, Michaelstow, Minster, Otterham, St. Breward, St. Clether, St. Juliot, St. Teath, Tintagel, Trevalga.

The Superintendant Registrar of Bodmin can be contacted at: Lyndhurst, 66 Nicholas Street, Bodmin, Cornwall, PL31 2AG. Tel: 01208 73677.


Description & Travel

You can see pictures of Tintagel which are provided by:



The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868

"TINTAGEL, (or Dundagell), a parish in the hundred of Lesnewth, county Cornwall, 3 miles W. of Boscastle, its post town, and 6 N.W. of Camelford. The parish is situated near Tintagel Head and Creek on the Bristol Channel, by which it is bounded on the N. It comprises about 4,000 acres, and includes the disfranchised borough of Bossiney, and the villages of Oldborough and Trevena. On the cliffs are traces of King Arthur's Castle, which came to the crown and was the occasional residence of several of the Norman kings, but subsequently became a state prison for the Duchy of Cornwall. Near the shore are slate quarries, in which are found those polygonal crystals called "Cornish diamonds." The living is a vicarage* in the diocese of Exeter, value £220, in the patronage of the dean and canons of Windsor. The church, dedicated to St. Symphorian, has several stained windows, and was thoroughly restored in 1854. There is a National school for both sexes. The Wesleyans, Association Methodists, and Bible Christians have chapels. The Prince of Wales, as Duke of Cornwall, is lord of the manor. There were formerly two chapels-of-ease in the parish. A fair for cattle occurs at Trevena on the Monday following the 18th October.

"BOSSINEY, a village in the parish of Tintagel, hundred of Lesnewth, in the county of Cornwall, 4 miles to the N. W. of Camelford. It is situated in a wild and rocky country on the sea-coast, and was once a market town and parliamentary borough. It was made a free borough by Richard Earl of Cornwall, in the 13th century, and from the reign of Edward VI. returned two members to parliament, until the passing of the Reform Act, under which it was disfranchised. The borough was anciently designated the Borough of Bossiney, comprising the village of Trevena and a portion of the parish of Tintagel. There is a National school supported by subscription.



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 Tintagel ecclesiastical parish:



You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SX065870 (Lat/Lon: 50.650873, -4.738074), Tintagel which are provided by:



Apprenticeship Indentures for Tintagel (1790, 1817 and 1828) can be found in the Cornwall Record Office.


Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • Tintagel parish was part of the Camelford Union for Poor Law administration and parish relief.
  • Overseers' Accounts (1804 to 1825) and Settlement Papers (1772), are available in the Cornwall Record Office.


  • Population in 1801 - 649 persons
  • Population in 1811 - 730 persons
  • Population in 1821 - 877 persons
  • Population in 1831 - 1006 persons
  • Population in 1841 - 1185 persons
  • Population in 1851 - 1085 persons
  • Population in 1861 - 900 persons
  • Population in 1871 - 1001 persons
  • Population in 1881 - 894 persons
  • Population in 1891 - 719 persons
  • Population in 1901 - 868 persons
  • Population in 1911 - 989 persons
  • Population in 1921 - 1207 persons
  • Population in 1931 - 1234 persons
  • Population in 1951 - 1451 persons
  • Population in 1961 - 1300 persons
  • Population in 1971 - 1372 persons
  • Population in 1981 - 1520 persons
  • Population in 1991 - 1719 persons
  • Population in 2001 - 1822 persons
  • Population in 2011 - 1727 persons


The parish comprises 4885 acres of land.


Voting Registers