St Keverne is a coastal parish , mainly agricultural but with quarrying activity. St Keverne has three inhabited fishing coves in the parish: Porthallow, Porthousetock and Coverack.
St Keverne is an village with an attractive square surrounded by a Church, two pubs, one butchers' shop, post office and village shop. A Chapel, Parish Hall, Church Hall, Band club room, Health Centre and School complete a lively community.
One of the oldest traditions that takes place is on Good Friday when local inhabitants go 'Trigging' for cockles on the Helford River. This tradition dates back over generations and is a social gathering for families and friends.
The Ox Roast originated from the Coronation of George V1 in 1937. In 1953 when meat rationing was still in force and the Ministry of Food worried about the nation's meat stock might disappear in one day, ruled that communities could only celebrate with a roasting if they could show they had cooked an ox for the late King. In all the UK only 82 communities qualified with this being the only village in west Cornwall to do so and in June 1953 they held an Ox Roast to celebrate the Coronation of Elizabeth 11. The Ox Roast is now held in early August every year.
St Keverne local history
The present church building was built in the l5 th century and is one of the largest parish churches in Cornwall and can seat 850 people. Known for its church tower, which is used as a marker to guide boats past the Manacles Rocks (their name comes from the Cornish "maen eglos" which means "stones of the church"). The tower was struck by lightening in the 18th century, and had to be rebuilt.
The churchyard holds many graves including the stark granite cross which marks the mass graves of those lost on the Mohegan on the 14th October 1898 and also those from the ships Spryridian Vagliano, Primrose, Dispatch, Clan Alpine, John and the Bay of Panama. The cannon from HMS Primrose was brought to the surface by divers in 1978 and now stands by the lych-gate.
The Manacle Rocks have taken a terrible toll of ships over the years, with 400 victims buried in the church yard. Two of the worst tragedies were "The John" in 1855 which sunk with the loss of 196 lives, and the "Mohegan" on which 106 lives were lost when it hit the rocks at full steam in 1898. The Shipwreck of The SS Mohegan on the Manacles in 1898 is told in tape recordings made in October 1966 (now on CD). The tapes record interviews with three St. Keverne people who had either witnessed the tragedy or who had heard first hand accounts of it within their families.
The blacksmith, Michael An Gof (Michael Joseph) and Thomas Flamark from Bodmin, led the 1497 march to London against Henry VIII's punitive tax to fund his war against the Scots. Joining forces along the way with Thomas Flamank of Bodmin when he confronted the Royal army at Blackheath, his army was an estimated 40,000 strong. At first light however, the poorly armed Cornish rising was smashed and Flamank and Joseph were later hanged, drawn and quartered. The bronze statue on the roadside as you enter the village commemorates the most important event in th village's history.
White Hart Inn on the village square.
St Keverne, Cornwall genealogical information from Genuki
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