Truro St John,Cornwall

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Parish History

Truro St John was built as a Chapel to Kenwyn, Cornwall Ancient parish as a boundary reorganisation ot Truro.

The foundation stone was laid on 5th April 1827, and opened in 1828. It is situated in Lemon Street, and was built in the Italian style. Over the entrance is a Grecian bell turret which originally contained a single bell.

St John's was built in 1828 it was a simple rectangular block with a whitewashed interior and balconies on the north and south sides. A new church was needed because Kenwyn Church and St Mary's (now incorporated into Truro Cathedral) were full. The architect was Philip Sambell of Devonport.
Alterations were made in 1860. The curved apse was built in Italian style. The architect was William Henry Reid of Plymouth.

The Parish was formed in 1865.

In 1884 the church was opened after extensive alterations. The architect was James Arthur Reeve of Exeter. The church was altered beyond recognition. The wooden ornamental ceiling had been constructed and new stained glass windows were installed, including the eagle of St John at the west end. The windows in the north gallery depict David. There are two in the south of Moses and Melchizedek. The theme of the apse is the resurrection. The windows show Jonah and Elijah. The organ and case had been installed.

The alterations envisaged by Reeve were continued in 1892 and on completion meant that the church looked much as it does today. The Reverend Frank Edward Lewis was the Minister from 1892 to 1907. He was responsible for the painting in the apse and the five paintings on wood in the baptistry and was probably the artist. The five paintings in the baptistry illustrate the evangelisation of Britain:
King Ethelbert, baptised 597
St Aidan, Celtic Mission from Iona
St Cybi (Cuby), born Cornwall (he has the face of Dr Mason who was Bishop Benson's chaplain)
St Gregory
St Augustine, first Archbishop of Canterbury (he has the face of Truro's first bishop, Bishop Benson, who became Archbishop)


Civil Registration

Births, marriages and deaths were kept by the government from July 1837 to the present day. The civil registration article tells more about these records. There are several Internet sites with name lists or indexes. A popular site is Free BMD.

Church records

Images of parish registers are available online at FamilySearch Images refer to Cornwall Record Office reference: P 238

Cornwall Online Parish Clerks

An extremely useful resource is the Cornwall Online Parish Clerks page for the parish

The history, registers and much more have been contributed by the Online Parish clerk for Truro parishes.

Census records

Overview, Include any unique information such as, the census for X year was destroyed, Collection in FHL and link to catalog, Online sites.

Cornwall Online Census Project

Poor Law Unions

Upon creation the parish was incorporated into Truro Poor Law Union in 1865

Probate records

Records of wills, administrations, inventories, indexes, etc. were filed by the court with jurisdiction over this parish. Go to Cornwall Probate Records to find the name of the court having primary jurisdiction. Scroll down in the article to the section Court Jurisdictions by Parish.

Maps and Gazetteers

There are many maps and gazetteers showing English places. Valuable websites are:


Add here any relevant sites that aren't mentioned above.