University of Exeter logo

Cornwall's Maritime Churches

Toggle navigation Open menu

Discovering St Materiana in Tintagel

Hear from one of our first researchers, Shannon Rowe, who unveils her recent discoveries in Tintagel whilst discussing what the project has done for her research skills.

Shannon stands in front of Tintagel church

Over the summer of 2019, I was able to do lots of research into Tintagel’s Parish Church, a small building near the cliffs with a surprisingly large history.

The location itself has been used since the 5th Century AD as a burial ground, which was then built upon by the Normans and added to up until the present day. From Roman milestones, Norman fonts, Tudor Rood screens and connections to Thomas Hardy and Alfred Lord Tennyson, to shipwrecks, cliff disasters and dramatic maritime rescues, it seems this church keeps revealing many secrets we do not expect to find.

Tintagel’s church, St Materiana, stands on the edge of the cliffs, overlooking Tintagel’s famous castle.

This project has been extremely rewarding so far. It has taught me how to search for rare sources and use that to my advantage and also shown me different methods of finding said sources. I was even able to plan a visit to the church and the iconic Tintagel Castle,  which both helped this project and that of my dissertation, as both places have Arthurian connections and were only a ten-minute walk from each other!

I would highly recommend this project as a means of furthering your research skills and to find out some interesting hidden history. Like myself, you may be able to write an article for their next journal, Cornish Story >

Back home