Landrake with St. Erney - a rural parish in south east Cornwall.

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St Erney Church

The church is dedicated to St Terminus of whom nothing is known unless it is the same as St Germanus. It may be St Ernoc of Brittany who spent some time in South East Cornwall.

It is first recorded in 1269 and the building is mainly of the 14th and 15th centuries but the Lann which surrounds the church suggests an early Christian site which could be from Celtic times. It may have been a chapel connected with the priory at St German's since it is possible to ford the river at low tide at Markwell.

The tower and nave are late 13th century and the chancel probably mid 15th century. There was a substantial restoration in 1872 which included re-roofing and rebuilding the north and south porches. The window to the west of the tower is probably 19th century set in the opening of a formerly larger window with a rough segmental head and inposts remaining. There is an embattled parapet with later granite obelisk pinnacles.

There are 3 bells of which the treble bears an invocation to the Virgin in Old English letters. The second is dated 1671, the tenor is plain.

The font is probably 13th century but could be made from something older. There is an oil painting of the Blake coat of arms dated 1770 in a lozenge indicating a female member of the family. In the tower is a hatchment with The Lord's Prayer and Creed obtained in 1718 at a cost of £2 10 0 and an extra 1/6 for "bringing it in ". The pews are 19th century. There is an 18th century sanctuary chair in the chancel

There are monuments to the Blake, Geake, Steed and Rawe families and a reredros in memory of Rev Frederick John Behenna vicar 1893 to 1927.

Frank Stevens

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December 2014
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