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Terrace of Cottages in Lawhitton - - 330665.jpg
A terrace of cottages in Lawhitton
Lawhitton is located in Cornwall
Lawhitton shown within Cornwall
Population 232 (Civil Parish, 2011)
OS grid reference SX355824
Civil parish
  • Lawhitton Rural
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district PL15
Dialling code 01566
Police Devon and Cornwall
Fire Cornwall
Ambulance South Western
EU Parliament South West England
UK Parliament
List of places
50°37′01″N 4°19′34″W / 50.617°N 4.326°W / 50.617; -4.326Coordinates: 50°37′01″N 4°19′34″W / 50.617°N 4.326°W / 50.617; -4.326

Lawhitton (Cornish: Nansgwydhenn) is a civil parish and village in east Cornwall, England, United Kingdom. The civil parish is called Lawhitton Rural. The village is situated two miles (3 km) southwest of Launceston and half-a-mile west of Cornwall's border with Devon at the River Tamar.[1]

The parish of Lawhitton is in the Launceston registration district. It is a comparatively small parish and Lawhitton village is the principal settlement. The border with Devon forms the parish's eastern boundary; to the north, it is bounded by St Thomas by Launceston parish; to the west by Launceston parish; and to the south by Lezant parish. The population of the parish in the 2001 census was 270,[2] decreasing to 232 at the 2011 census.[3]


Old Post Office, Lawhitton

In the 880s, Saxon priests controlled church estates like Polltun, Caellwic, Landwithan (Pawton, in St Breock) and Lawhitton.[citation needed] Eventually they passed these over to Wessex kings[citation needed]. These estates were granted to the Bishop of Sherborne to whose diocese Cornwall had been added. Landwithan included the parishes of Lawhitton, South Petherwin (with Dunheved, modern Launceston), Trewen and Lezant. In 1050 they passed to the Bishop of Exeter and remained a peculiar deanery of the Bishop until 1850. Consequently, two-thirds of the parish of Lawhitton still belongs to the Church Commissioners. At the time of Domesday Book (1086) the manor was held by the bishop and had 11 hides of land and land for 40 ploughs. The lord had land for 2 ploughs with 7 serfs, and 27 villeins and 20 smallholders had land for 29 ploughs. There was 8 acres of meadow, 100 acres of pasture and 10 acres of underwood. The value of the manor was £17 though it had formerly been worth only £8.[4]

Until 1261 the benefice of Lawhitton consisted of a vicarage and a sinecure rectory; they were then combined as a rectory. From then until 1924 there were 60 rectors, of whom probably only 19 were resident.[5] The last of these rectors was Henry Du Boulay who was concurrently Archdeacon of Bodmin from 1892 to 1924[6][7] Du Boulay was ordained in 1864 and died in 1925;[8] he was the son of an earlier rector of Lawhitton.

There is a Cornish cross at Treniffle; it was found built into an old barn at Tregada Farm about 1883 and then placed in her garden by Mrs. Morshead.[9]

Parish church[edit]

Lawhitton church

The parish church of St Michael is in Lawhitton village at SX 355 825; it is of various periods of English Gothic architecture. The plan is unusual and the tower stands in the position of a south transept. The tower is 13th century in date and there is a north aisle. The font is Norman, of the Altarnun type. Features of interest include the Jacobean pulpit, 1665, and two monuments, to R. Bennet (d. 1683) and in Coade stone to Richard Coffin (d. 1796).[10]


  1. ^ Ordnance Survey: Landranger map sheet 201 Plymouth & Launceston ISBN 978-0-319-23146-3
  2. ^ GENUKI website; Lawhitton page; retrieved April 2010
  3. ^ "parish population 2011". Retrieved 10 February 2015. 
  4. ^ Thorn, C. et al., ed. (1979) Cornwall. Chichester: Phillimore; entry 2,9
  5. ^ Cornish Church Guide (1925) Truro: Blackford; pp. 139-40
  6. ^ Prussia Cove houses ("Cornwall" is a mistake here)
  7. ^ "Cornwall Record Office; du Boulay". Cornwall Council. Retrieved 24 September 2011. 
  8. ^ Brown, H. M. (1976) A Century for Cornwall. Truro: Blackford; p. 89
  9. ^ Langdon, A. G. (1896) Old Cornish Crosses. Truro: Joseph Pollard; p. 186
  10. ^ Pevsner, N. (1970) Cornwall; 2nd ed., rev. by Enid Radcliffe. Penguin; p. 99