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A Brief History of St. Columb Minor & Porth

Penwyth House is situated in the quiet village of St Columb Minor, on the outskirts of Newquay near Porth. At one time St Columb Minor used to be the main settlement in the area, but it is now part of the larger Newquay area.

St Columba’s Church

The late 15th-century church in the parish is where we got married and is a Gothic-style Grade I Listed church built on an ancient burrow. The Tower, recorded as the second highest in Cornwall, is 115 feet in height.

Porth Beach

The nearby Porth Beach was the port for St Columb Minor. All the requirements of the village such as coal, salt, lime and a multitude of general cargoes were unloaded there. When Newquay became a china clay port, vessels discharged coal into carts on Porth Beach and continued to Newquay to load china clay.

In the 1800’s, Porth was a ship building yard owned by two Porth families. Boats were launched from Porth stern first at low tide.

Trevelgue Head

The headland on Porth Beach, known as Trevelgue Head or Porth Island, was the site of an Iron Age promontory fort. Its ramparts and two round barrows dating from the Bronze Age still remain.

In 1939, there was an archaeological excavation of Trevelgue Head. There are foundations of Iron Age roundhouses dating from the 2nd century BC.

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