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Latitude: 50.3379 / 50°20'16"N
Longitude: -4.4906 / 4°29'26"W
OS Eastings: 222859
OS Northings: 51630
OS Grid: SX228516
Mapcode National: GBR ND.X4BD
Mapcode Global: FRA 18H4.LCD
Entry Name: Church of St Tallanus
Listing Date: 21 August 1964
Source: Historic England
Source ID: 1140743
English Heritage Legacy ID: 61559
Location: Polperro, Cornwall, PL13
Civil Parish: Polperro
Traditional County: Cornwall
Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall
Church of England Parish: Talland
Church of England Diocese: Truro
SX 25 SW
4/92 Church of St Tallanus
Parish church. Circa C13 church built by Augustinian monks from Priory at
Launceston. Remains of this fabric in present structure at the west end of the nave,
east end of the chancel and possibly lower stage of the tower. Remainder of present
structure late C15 with north transept (Killigarth Chapel) probably added in early
C16. Restored in 1848-50 and in 1907.
Stone rubble with slate roofs with nave and chancel in one. Stonework changes above
cill level on south aisle. North wall rebuilt during 1845-50 restoration.
Comprises 6-bay nave, chancel, south aisle and north transept. A covered porch
connects the south door with a detached tower to the south of the west end of the
South aisle with five 3-light simple uncusped Perpendicular windows with 4-centred
arches with hoodmoulds. West end of south aisle with 2-light rectangular window with
segmental headed undecorated lights. East end with 4-light circa late C16
Perpendicular window with hollow-chamfered mullions. Chancel window circa C13 3-
light lancet with cusped heads, partly restored. Small quatrefoil in apex. North
wall of chancel buttressed with circa C13 2-light lancet with cusped head with
rectangular surround. North transept east, west and north walls buttressed. East
wall with C16 2-light traceried window with hollow-chamfered jambs. Openings altered
on north wall with C20 door and 2-light window above. West wall with 2 uncusped
lancets with hollow chamfers. North wall of nave with 3 possibly C16 3-light
Perpendicular windows with 4-centred arches and hoodmoulds. Buttresses between.
West end of nave with large buttresses. Three circa C13 lancet windows with cusped
heads. Unusual detached south tower built into side of hill on bed-rock. 3 stages
on north side and 2 stages on south side. North entrance to tower from within
covered porch. 4 steps built into bed-rock leading to 2-centred arched opening with
hollow-chamfer and stops. South face of tower with set-back buttresses. 1-light
opening in second stage with cusped head. Partly blocked 2-light opening above.
South porch forming covered way with low granite 4-centred arches with moulded jambs.
Cobbled floor within. 4-centred south entrance with roll mould. Studded door with
Interior south aisle with fine circa Cl5. waggon roof restored in 1907 when plaster
ceiling was removed and the rafters replaced. Carved ribs with 2 plain ribs between.
5 carved longitudinal ribs. Carved bosses, wall and arcade plates. Nave roof
largely replaced in circa 1830. Some reused circa Cl5 material including several
moulded ribs. Circa C15 carved wall and arcade plates. North transept with ceiled
waggon roof of circa early C16. Moulded transverse and longitudinal ribs and carved
bosses, partly restored. Circa C16 waggon roof to covered porch with carved ribs
with 3 uncarved ribs between. 2 longitudinal carved ribs. Moulded wallplate on east
side restored. Carved wallplate on west. Carved bosses.
6-bay nave with arcade with 4-centred granite arches with convex, concave and
rollmoulding. Cornish type A (Pevsner) piers on tall moulded bases.
Fine collection of carved oak bench ends. (Compare with Lansallos Church qv). Circa
1525 and circa 1600. Include intertwined foliage, carved figure heads and
Renaissance detailing. Bench ends at east surmounted by angel figures. (Compare
with Lanreath Church, qv). Bench ends in North Transept (Killigarth Chapel) circa
early C17 with names and arms of Sir Bernard and Lady Elizabeth Grenville and family
of Killigarth Manor (qv).
Choir stalls made up of fragments from Bernard Grenville's pew with remains of the
early C17 rood screen, taken down in the 1848-50 restoration. Carved with
Renaissance details and coats of arms with quaterings of the Grenville, Beville, Bere
and Saint Ledger families. Altar rails with turned balusters, circa C18.
Circa C15 font of Bath stone. Ornamented with quatrefoils in panels. Basin lined
with lead and inscribed '1672 WM 1672 WT'. Tap inserted on western face.
Hagioscope in south wall of chancel. Oak pulpit and lower level reading desk with
carved panels. Book rest constructed from remains of rood screen.
Memorials Remarkable fine slate altar tomb in south east corner of south aisle,
commemorating John Beville. 1579 by Peter Crocker (signed). Above are helmet and
cuirass of Beville family. Kendall monument in Killigarth chapel. (Kendalls
resident at Killigarth after the Bevilles). Commemorates Thomas and wife Mary and
daughter Mary who died in 1709-10 and was buried at Westminster Abbey. Monument in
Abbey reveals that Mary Kendall had lived with Lady Catherine Jones and had desired
that even her ashes should not be divided. At east end of church, slate ledger stone
to Joanna Mellow and son, both of whom died in childbirth. 1625, carving in shallow
relief represents mother and baby sitting in a 4 poster bed. Also in chancel, ledger
stone to Johannis Morth of Talland, died 1687. Heraldic arms. Also stone to Robert
Mark, smuggler who was shot at sea.
Stocks in porch.
Medieval mural paintings were destroyed when the north wall was rebuilt in 1845-50.
An account by W.H. Box entitled 'Description of some frescoes recently discovered on
the wall of Talland Church' may be found in Report of the Royal Institute of Cornwall
1849, p 32.
The Church of St Tallanus is of particularly high standard with an unusual detached
tower,magnificent waggon roofs to south aisle, porch and north transept, bench ends
Allsopp, E.G. A guide to Talland Parish Church 1979
Pevsner, N and Radcliffe, E The Buildings of England, Cornwall 2nd ed. 1970
Sites and Monuments Register, Truro
Listing NGR: SX2000951911
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