Posts tagged ‘Cornwall’

Churches Project no. 7 – St Swithin, Launcells, Cornwall



It’s been a little while since I posted an entry relating to my Churches Project. This is partly because I have spent a lot of my spare time recently processing and then posting images which were taken in Snowdonia. But it’s mainly down to the fact that I just haven’t found the time to visit and photograph any new churches!

This church is St Swithin in Launcells, Cornwall. It is an unspoilt country church dating back to the 15th Century, set in a wooded valley just inland from the coastal town of Bude and only a few miles from the Devon border.

Sometimes when I visit a church for the first time a particular feature strikes me above all others and this was certainly the case when I visited St Swithin. As I set foot through the main door my eye was instantly drawn to all the Tudor pews and their quite remarkable carved bench ends. The first and last pews are also carved on the front and back respectively, whilst the other rows are all decorated at each end. They are all different and depict a variety of biblical stories. I didn’t have the time, but many an hour could be spent trying to interpret each set of carvings. Sir John Betjeman described them as being the ‘finest bench ends in Cornwall’ and who I am I to argue with that.








The other fine feature was the old and well used Bible which perhaps unusually was illustrated with some fine drawings. The good book was open at the Gospel of Mark and the picture shows Christ ‘giving sight to the blind’.




Oh how wonderful it is to have vision, not to look in to the future but to be blessed with sight – to see and appreciate things in the present moment. To be able to witness and admire at the first hand the fine craftsmanship of those people, who back in the 15th and 16th Centuries used their skills to create something which some 500 years later can still be enjoyed today.

Sandymouth Bay – a broader view

In a recent post ‘Coastal abstractions at Sandymouth Bay’, I showed a series of images which were simply abstracts of the granite rocks to be found at this picturesque bay along the coastline of North Cornwall. In this post I am showing a broader view, all taken at low tide. The cliffs and rock formations are a great sight and stretch for many miles to the north and to the south.  In fact the South West Coast Path is a National Trail covering some 630 miles, taking in the four counties of Dorset, Devon, Cornwall and Somerset. It starts in Poole Harbour in Dorset and finishes in Minehead in Somerset. For more information about this Trail click here.

Sandymouth Sands

Sandymouth Sands



Sandymouth Rocks

Sandymouth Rocks


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Sandymouth Bay

Sandymouth Bay





Coastal abstractions at Sandymouth Bay

Sandymouth Bay is a spectacular location on the north Cornwall coast near the town of Bude. Approached along a fairly steep path through a ravine in the cliffs, the granite rock formations are intriguing and well worth exploring. It’s a fine location for rock pooling as well as some photography.

I am always happy to experiment with my photography, making images that challenge my skills, my vision and my mind. The results in this entry are a series of abstract pictures which for me capture something of the variety and visual wonder of this coastline.







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Churches Project no. 2 – St Materiana, Tintagel, Cornwall

I approached the church from Tintagel Castle along cliff tops with spectacular views out towards the Atlantic. The village of Tintagel is clearly visible in the background.

When I first arrived at St Materiana, I was greeted by a notice in the graveyard – ‘Beware Adders’. Needless to say I trod very carefully as I walked around trying to find the best position to photograph the exterior of the building.



The parish church of Tintagel is in the Anglican Diocese of Truro and county of Cornwall England. The Church was built between 1080 and 1150 and stands in an exposed position on Glebe Cliff overlooking the sea. St Materiana has been identified with St Madryn, a princess of Gwent, who, according to tradition, evangelised this area in about 500 AD. It is likely that the Church was built on the site of an oratory served in celtic days by the monks of Minster and later replaced by a Saxon style building. It appears to have been built on the site of intensive early Christian burial during the 5th to 7th centuries and the church today still retains an air of early Christianity.



The very large graveyard slopes away from the church, back towards the nearby village.



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To view a larger version of the featured image click on the thumbnail below.