CORNWALL ONLINE PARISH CLERKS - helping bring the past alive

The parish of


The ancient town of St Columb Major has a wonderful Church at its heart. The tower is 15th century and 80 feet high with a passage from south to north through it that is as wide as a hand cart. This was a right of way to the College founded by Sir John Arundel in 1427 as the Church did not own the land on three sides of the tower until 1820.

The parish is bounded by St Ervan, Little Petherick, St Issey, St Wenn, Roche, St Dennis, St Enoder, Colan, St Columb Minor and St Mawgan in Pydar. Edward III granted a market in St Columb Major to Sir John Arundell in 1333. It is still a busy market town and the largest settlement in the parish. The Union Workhouse for the parishes of St Breock, St Columb Major, St Columb Minor, Colan, Crantock, Cubert, St Ervan, St Eval, St Enoder, St Issey, Little Petherick, St Merryn, Mawgan-in-Pydar, Newlyn East, Padstow and St Wenn was built in St Columb Major town in about 1840. This means that a large number of "strays" from other parishes are recorded here in the censuses and baptismal registers.

As well as farming, there was mining in this parish.

Cornwall Online Parish Clerks

The volunteer as Online Parish Clerk (Genealogy) for St Columb Major is Karen Tuplin who can be contacted at .

For information about (and contact details for) the current town council, please see this website.
Contact details for the church can be found by searching here.



Please visit COCP (Cornwall Online Census Project), which is complete for 1841 to 1891 and validated, FreeCens at Rootsweb - both are free, searchable databases - or check GenUKI for other alternatives.


Church records are extensive and are: Baptisms 1540-1964, Marriages 1544-1970 and Burials 1539-1965 all held at CRO. Many have been transcribed and are in our database, see the parish coverage page.

To search for records, please see our searchable database (C-PROP) which is updated frequently.


  1830, Pigot's Directory for St Columb 1852-53, Slater's Directory of St Columb and Newquay

Please visit the University of Leicester's Directories website, which has many directories online to view for free.


Bastardy/Filiation Documents: - many also name local J.P.s, Churchwardens and / or Overseers of the Poor, as well as the couple concerned

  1. a Bond, dated 24 Sep 1812, naming William and James FLAMANK of this parish.
  2. an Order, dated 30 Sep 1828, naming John LANYON, labourer of this parish.
  3. a Petty Session Order, dated 9 September 1840, naming William POLKINGHORN of this parish.

Settlement Papers:

  4 Jan 1697, Sarah JOHNS, St Columb Major (& St Breock) 13 Dec 1831, Susannah UDY (& St Breock)
  17 Feb 1743, Sarah OLLIVER 10 May 1833, Samuel & Joan BREWER, (& Padstow)
  9 Nov 1748, William & Anne TUBB (& Probus) 8 Feb 1842, Thomas & Jane PRYNN & sons (& St Breock)
  26 Sep 1807, Honor SALMON (& Probus) 17 Apr 1843, William Henry & Mary HAMBLY & family (& St Breock)
  14 Sep 1814, Henry & Fanny UDY & family (& St Breock) 7 Feb 1849, John SCANTLEBURY & family (& St Breock)
  11 Jul 1815, Roger & Elizabeth LUKE & family (& St Breock)  

Voters Lists:

  1. 1851/52
  2. 1852/53
  3. 1856/57
  4. 1864/65


A list of available Wills and Probate Documents. Copies of those marked as CRO can be ordered from here using the appropriate reference.  For those marked as NA enter the reference in the search box on this page and follow the onscreen instructions.

  18 Sep 1549, Richard VYVYAN 21 Feb 1747, Robert HOBLYN
  4 Jun 1587, John VIVIAN 28 Mar 1747, Walter HARRIS
  12 Aug 1590, John CARTHEW 29 May 1747, Elizabeth STEPHENS
  5 Jun 1609, Richard HAWKE, the elder 3 Feb 1748, John BREWER
  12 Apr 1610, John HICKES 26 Dec1748, Sarah BISHOP
  29 Apr 1639, Hugh/Hugonis LAWRY/LAWRI 5 Mar 1749, William CALLWAY
  1 Nov 1653, Edward HOBLYN 28 Mar 1749, Richard HICKS
  1 Jun 1682, Robert HOBLYN 24 Apr 1750, Stephen BREWER
  18 Sep 1693, Grace HOBLYN 18 Mar 1752, Edward ARTHUR
  19 Nov 1742, John METHERELL 24 Sep 1880, Henry BRENTON
  4 Jul 1744, Richard COWLING  

Indentures and Other Documents:

  1. dated 21 March 1818, naming the Rev. Francis COLE of this parish
  2. dated 2 Apr 1898, a bankruptcy indenture, involving Thomas HICKS of St Columb Major

For more information regarding history, population, etc., visit GenUKI.


For a zoomable and printable map of Cornwall please visit Cornwall Council’s mapping website. To see the Parish boundaries, click on the Layers Tab for Government Boundaries.

For maps and satellite images use Google Maps.

To enjoy a "walk" around this parish, search for St Columb Major at, then drag the person icon from above the zoom commands and place it at a specific location on the map.


Colan, St Columb Minor, Mawgan in Pydar, St Ervan, Little Petherick, St Issey, St Wenn, Roche, St Dennis and St Enoder.


  1. St Columb Major is included in The Parochial History of Cornwall, Volume I by Davies Gilbert, William Hals, Thomas Tonkin, Henry Samuel Boase, originally published in 1838 (page n252). Also downloadable as a pdf.
  2. The Registers of the Parish of St Columb Major (1539 - 1780), Edited by Arthur J Jewers F.S.A.
  3. The Cornwall Register by John Wallis, A.M. F.S.S., then Vicar of Bodmin, printed 1847. If the in-built search produces no results, use the index pages (474-476) to find your parish of interest. Tables of statistics and other data can be found at the beginning of the book, starting at page n9.
  4. Phillimore's Marriages Vol XVI transcripts including St Columb Major (transcribed and in our database). For the Contents page, keep clicking on Next until page 7/156 appears.


Click images to enlarge
Fore Street looking towards the bank. The arch runs from the Red Lion to the shops opposite & was built to mark the 1887 Jubilee of Queen Victoria  View along Broad St. from Union Square The Board of Guardians of St Columb Major Workhouse c 1900  Gluvian, St Columb c.1880 
All photographs © Malcolm McCarthy