Carnmenellis, Cornwall

carnmenellis cornwall towns

Carnmenellis is close to Stithians Reservoir, between Falmouth and Redruth. It is a comparatively modern parish, being created in 1846 from part of Wendron parish. The parish of Carnmenellis is now part of, Stithians parish. The name comes from the Cornish for a rocky hill 'Carn' plus an unknown word.

The 822 feet high hill has a pile of rocks on its summit. This is four flat thin stones; the upper one is circular, and about 19 feet in diameter. There is a row of stones and a trench about 36 feet in diameter around these stones. There are tumuli on the top of this hill, in which Roman coins have been found.

Carnmenellis is situated on open moorland, the area being cleared of most woodland cover at an early date. Carnmenellis was fairly densely populated in the Bronze Age, when the climate was much milder than it is today. Since then the landscape has grown with a mix of original small fields and larger fields that came with enclosures of the 18th and 19th centuries.

Miners' cottages and ruined engine houses stipple the landscape, which is mainly bleak and exposed, with more sheltered parts in the south-east where there is land in arable and horticultural use. In the north, towards Camborne and Redruth are the remains of mine engine houses, the rough ground of mine 'burrows' and old shafts, old tramways and scarred land.

Cornish Mining records

"The holdings on Carnmenellis itself are small – most no more than five acres in total extent and made up of ten or so half acre fields defined by walls built from the stone cleared during their creation. Fringing the hill, where soils were deeper and richer, plots were, by 1878, larger (averaging between one and two acres) and the holdings seem to have been between seven and nine acres in extent. In the surrounding landscape the 1880 Ordnance Survey 1:2500 map shows larger farms, though the grid-like arrangement and small size of their fields suggest that these were formed from a number of smaller landholdings. "

Carnmenellis, Cornwall Genealogical Information from Genuki


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