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The parish of


The Parish Church © John Evans
More photographs at bottom of page

The parish of Roche (pronounced Roach – and indeed spelt as such in many of the early Registers) lies in mid Cornwall, about 6 miles north of St Austell. It stands at approximately 1,000 feet above sea level, on the northern side of the Hensbarrow granite massif (much of which is dedicated to the china clay industry). To the north are the parishes of St Wenn and Withiel, to the east Lanivet and Luxulyan, to the south St Stephen in Brannel and Treverbyn and to the west St Dennis and St Columb Major.
The parish and village of the same name (Cornish: An Garrek or Tregarrek – homestead of the rock) derive their name from the granite/tourmaline outcrop standing on the ancient manor of Tregarrick, known as Roche Rock, on top of which is poised a chapel dedicated (as are so many places of worship on high places) to St Michael, and a cell or hermitage.
Extending to about 6,500 acres, much of the parish is given over to agriculture, although, from quite early times Goss Moor, on the north-west side of the parish, was extensively streamed for tin. Then, in the 18th century, following William Cookworthy’s discovery of high grade china clay deposits in neighbouring St Stephen in Brannel, china clay and china stone were also discovered and worked in Roche, giving rise to the brickworks at Carbis.
In addition to the village of Roche – growing from the original Churchtown – the parish is also home to the hamlets of Belowda (or Belovely as is it called by many locals), Carbis, Coldvreath, Tregoss, Tremodrett and Trezaise.

Cornwall Online Parish Clerks

The Online Parish Clerk (Genealogy) for Roche is John Evans, who can be contacted at .

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



Information can be found at COCP (the Cornwall Online Census Project), which is complete for 1841 to 1891 and has been verified, FreeCen at Rootsweb, which has a very good search engine and information from COCP, as well as GenUKI, which has more reference information and alternative resources.


For Parish Register information, please see our online searchable database (C-PROP), which is updated frequently, and GenUKI. The C-PROP parish coverage page is here.
Pre-1710 Registers are damaged. Details about those, plus a list of Rectors and Patrons can be found here. The transcripts of baptisms, marriages and burials are in our online database.


  Kelly's 1893  

For information, see the Cornwall Towns & Parishes link on GenUKI or visit the University of Leicester's Historical Directory website.


Many of the documents listed below also name local J.P.s, Churchwardens and / or Overseers of the Poor.

Apprenticeship Indentures:

30 Jun 1756, Mary OLIVER to William BLAKE 12 Jul 1820, Thomas Julian GRIGG to James STICK
  28 Apr 1789, Rebecca THOMAS to John TRUSCOTT 17 Jul 1820, Eliza COMMON to Thomas DYER
  31 May 1797, John GROSE to Walter PEARCE 17 Jul 1820, Joanna WARNE to Thomas STEPHENS
  16 Sep 1805, Luke MARK to William STEPHENS 17 Jul 1820, Margret STEPHENS to James VERCOE
  17 Jul 1806, John SHIRMAN to Elizabeth RETALLICK 17 Jul 1820, Mary Ann WEST to Robert GOUGE
  13 Oct 1807, John COMMON to John ROBINS 17 Jul 1820, Mary STEPHENS to John RETALLICK
  15 Jan 1808, Elizabeth COCK to Nicholas GROSE 26 Oct 1820, Phillippa DYER to William HAWKEY
  16 Feb 1808, Matthew COCK to Richard VARCO 2 Mar 1822, Joseph BEST to John HICKS (re-assigned)
  28 Aug 1810, James JEFFERY to Andrew PEARCE 18 Mar 1822, Ann WEST to Thomas STEVENS
  28 Aug 1810, Nicholas SHIRMAN to John VARCOE 17 Mar 1823, William STEPHENS to James STICK
  16 Feb 1811, Joan BILKEY to William YELLAND 24 Jun 1824, Elizabeth RETALLICK to Thomas KNIGHT 
  16 Feb 1811, Samuel BILKEY to Thomas TRETHEWY 24 Jun 1824, Phillippa STEVENS to Robert GOUDGE
  7 Jan 1812, Catharine SOLOMON to Philip HARRIS 24 Jun 1824, Richard MOSS to Joseph KNIGHT
  7 Jan 1812, Mary COMMON to James KNIGHT 24 Jun 1824, Jenefer STEVENS to Robert DYER
  7 Jan 1812, Thomas SOLOMON to John HAWKEN 20 Sep 1824, John COMIN to John ROBINS
  16 Nov 1812, Mary WARNE to Francis COUCH 21 Nov 1825, John DYER to Nicholas HOSKIN
  17 Mar 1813, Benjamin BROKENSHIRE to Thomas KNIGHT 19 Dec 1825, Jane PINCH to John KEY
  17 Mar 1813, George BROKENSHIRE to Joshua THOMAS 16 Jan 1826, Jenefer WEST to Thomas DYER
  17 Mar 1813, John HIGGANS to John HOBB 21 Apr 1828, James ROACH to James STICK
  27 Mar 1813, Elizabeth WEST to Henry SNELL 21 Apr 1828, Thomas STEPHENS to Samuel LAWRY
  4 Oct 1813, Frances WARNE to Thomas FRANCIS 16 Jun 1828, John PINCH to Thomas STICK
  12 Feb 1814, John BROCKENSHIRE to Robert DYER 16 Jun 1828, Thomas Stephens DYER to William FARO
  6 May 1814, Thomas MARSHALL to William LIDDICOAT 15 Dec 1828, John STEPHENS to John BATE
  30 Mar 1815, William BROKENSHIRE to James STICK 15 Dec 1828, Robert ROACH to Andrew PEARCE
  18 Sep 1817, John MINERS to Nicholas PASCOE 15 Mar 1830, Charlotte EDYVEAN to Joseph LAWRY
  19 Jun 1818, Elizabeth MINERS to John RETALLICK 20 Dec 1830, William STEPHENS to Richard VARCOE
  20 Dec 1819, John BROKENSHIRE to James RUNDLE 20 Feb 1832, John ROCHE to Joseph STEPHENS
  20 Dec 1819, Joseph BEST to Benjamin STURTRIDGE 20 Feb 1832, Prudence COMMON to Nicholas PASCOE
  20 Dec 1819, Thomas MYNARDS to William STEPHENS 20 Feb 1832, Richard COMMON to Thomas STICK
  26 Feb 1820, Grace ROACH to Richard VARCO 18 Mar 1833, John BILKEY to William ROUSE
  26 Feb 1820, John WEST to John BATE 15 Jul 1833, Stephen COMMON to Nicholas ROBINS
  26 Feb 1820, Mary FARO to William FARO 30 Sep 1833, Josias PHILLIPPS to John Stephens TRUSCOTT
  26 Feb 1820, Richard RETALLICK to William STEPHENS 30 Sep 1833, Mark DYER to Robert LANYON
  26 Feb 1820, Thomas COMMONS to Robert EDYVEAN 17 Mar 1834, William COMMON to Joshua THOMAS
  20 Mar 1820, Joseph HIGGANS to Thomas STICK 18 May 1835, Joshua THOMAS to William FARO
  12 Jul 1820, Catherine RETALLICK to John ROBINS 18 May 1835, Sally BREWER to William HAWKEY
  12 Jul 1820, Thomas WEST to John Pearce TRUSCOTT 8 Sep 1835, William THOMAS to Robert EDYVEAN
  12 Jul 1820, William GRIGG to Samuel LAWRY 12 May 1836, William PHILLIPPS to John KNIGHT

Bastardy/Filiation Documents:

  1. dated 13 Sep 1778, naming Frances WILLIAMS of this Parish.
  2. dated 9 Dec 1792, naming Mary RETALLICK and James HOSKIN.
  3. dated 18 Apr 1808, Bond naming Elizabeth COCK, Widow, and William KNIGHT. Also included are some details of the Will of James KNIGHT, father of William
  4. dated 5 Oct 1813, naming Jane BROKENSHIRE and Henry and Samuel BRENTON (all of St Wenn) concerning a child chargeable to the Parish of Roach
  5. dated 22 Sep 1818, naming Elizabeth WEDLAKE of this parish & Francis HONEY of St Stephen in Branwell
  6. dated 12 May 1828, Warrant for apprehending Joseph ROACH, also naming Elizabeth TELLAM

Indentures & Other Documents:

  1. 23 Feb 1767, a Promise of Payment, by William SOLOMON of Little Cullen to John PHILLIPS. (Further details unknown, but filmed by the LDS amongst indentures for Roche.)
  2. 5 Mar 1779, involving John PADDY & Joseph ALLEN

Photographs & Maps:

Many photographs are held by the Wheal Martyn China Clay Museum (and copies by the China Clay History Society), not only those related to that industry. John Evans has offered to search them for any of specific families and locations, and electronic copies would be supplied free of charge. Two examples are given below (click thumbnails to enlarge).

A large number of old O.S. Maps of many areas of Cornwall (various scales) are also available, the index is here. For the maps, please keep to the Crown Copyright as explained on the Ordnance Survey website.

  Roche Parish Church,
recast Bells 1911
Roche - Rosemellyn Beam Engine House c1920
South Side with Capt John Pinch
© Wheal Martyn & China Clay History Society

Settlement Papers:

  16 Mar 1753, Richard & Ann MICHELL 20 Feb 1854, Mary PAYNE & children (& Luxulyan)
  2 Sep 1764, Jane DYER (& Luxulyan) 7 Sep 1858, George LUCAS
  3 May 1802, Ann GEFFERY (& Probus) Oct/Nov 1859, Isabella PERRIN & children
  9 Sep 1818, Agnes POSTLETHWAITE and her 2 children 1859 & 1860, Eleanora GOUDGE & children
  21 Jul 1828, Elizabeth COUCH 7 Jan 1862, George & Samuel HOCKADAY
  5 May 1829, John & Catharine HAWKE & family (& Luxulyan) The Curious Case of Eleanora GOUDGE
  11 Sep 1844, William COUCH (& Luxulyan)  

Voters Lists:

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


  23 Mar 1607, Thomas HOOPER 26 Oct 1747, Elizabeth LUKE
  16 Oct 1609, John MOCK 25 Jan 1805, James KNIGHT
  5 Oct 1681, Stephen CARHART 26 Jul 1814, Joan PADDY
  6 Jan 1718, William MOCK 9 May 1816, William ROWSE
  24 Jan 1746, William GILES (mariner) 5 Jun 1849, James KNIGHT, admin only
  8 Oct 1747, Stephen GILES  

Other Probate material abstracts can be found on the VCH website.

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 Roche at, then drag the person icon from above the zoom commands and place it at a specific location on the map.


St Dennis, St Columb Major, St Wenn, Withiel, Lanivet, Luxulyan, St Austell and St Stephen in Brannel.


  1. Roche is included in The Parochial History of Cornwall, Volume III by Davies Gilbert, William Hals, Thomas Tonkin, Henry Samuel Boase, originally published in 1838 (page 390). Also downloadable as a pdf from here.
  2. 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.
  3. Phillimore's Marriages Vol XVII transcripts including Roche (transcribed and in our database).


Click thumbnails to enlarge

The former chapel at Tremodrett
© John Evans
The former chapel at Trezaise
© John Evans
Roche Chapel
© John Evans
Base of War Memorial
© John Evans
Roche Cemetery, Older Section
© John Evans
Roche Cemetery, Newer Section
© John Evans
Roche Rock
© Charles Winpenny