Grampound, St Nun’s

Grid Ref SW936483
Fore Street, Grampound, Truro, TR2 4QP

IMG_8984As the population of Grampound grew, it was agreed to build a place of worship in the town.  In 1370 a chapel was built and a licence granted in 1375 by John Pepow (hence Pepo Lane).

References have been made to St Matthew and St Barnabas but it is thought that the real patroness of the Chapel is St Naunter, the endowment lands and holy well being in a field called St Nauter [sic] in a valley to the north of the town. The well is now demolished but a stoup from the well has been built into the wall of a barn at Trevillick Farm.

The name has been corrupted over the years to St Nun’s.  St Nun is thought to have lived in the fifth century and was the mother of St David of Wales.  She is reported as being the daughter of a Pembrokeshire Chieftain who came to Cornwall and then moved to Brittany.  By 1821, the chapel was in ruins, the site was cleared and for almost 70 years it was used as a pound for sheep and cattle on market days or as a children’s playground.

IMG_8980It was said that many of the stones from the original church were built into the houses and cottages in Pepo lane.  In 1869 thanks to Revd Philip Woolcombe who was also an architect, the church of St Nun’s was rebuilt at a cost of £1,100 which was raised by public subscription. (Incidentally, the Revd Woolcombe also designed other churches in the county amongst which is the church at Devoran).

The church is early Gothic in style;  the chancel is superbly carved, as is the reredos which is made of Caen stone.  The bell is housed in a belcot and the vestry was built onto the church in 1976.

Interesting Points:

* This was a chapel of ease to Creed.  Daily worship took place here until 1548, but on Sundays and Feast days Grampound people had to visit Creed church for their services

* The date of the church is carved in the stone arch over the door from the church to the vestry.

* Pews at the rear of the church on the north side and around the font were removed in 2006 to make room for the children’s activities at Sunday Club.

* Remnants of St Nun’s chapel can be found at Veryan church and the former vicarage lodge which has the lovely rose window.  Deeds state that if the building is ever demolished the window has to be returned to Grampound.

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