ST SAMPSON CHURCH HILL, Golant
SX 15 NW
8/245 Church of St Sampson
Parish church. The chapel at St Sampson, annexed to the Priory at Tywardreath, is
recorded from 1281; extensively rebuilt between about 1450-1500, and consecrated as a
separate Church in 1509. Restoration of 1842 included removal of the screen and
repairs to the roof. South porch dated 1856 MR, for Martha Rashleigh, probably
rebuilt at this time. Tower and west end restored by Hine and Rogers in 1891, dated
on cill of south aisle window. Slatestone rubble with granite quoins and dressings;
tower of squared granite moorstone with granite dressings. Slate roofs with crested
ridge tiles, plain ridge tiles to nave.
Plan: nave and chancel in one, of one build, with later south aisle and south porch;
the nave and chancel probably largely dating from the early C15. Late C15 west
tower. Former priest's door in north side of chancel used as entrance for the north
vestry of mid C19. Perpendicular style.
Nave has 3 windows to north, 2 of 4 lights, with square heads, nave-moulded surround,
cusped lights and through mullions; smaller 3-light similar window to west. Between
the 2 eastern windows, a rubble buttress with pitched slate top; between the 2
windows to west, early C20 brick flue. The north vestry has gable end to north, with
pointed arched window with 2-light casement with Y tracery in wood.
The chancel has one window to north, of 4 lights, set high in the wall, as on north
side of nave. East gable end has tall C15 4-centred arched window, of 4-lights, with
cusped heads and upper Y tracery, hood mould with square stops. No joint visible to
the south aisle.
The south aisle is of 5 bays, with the porch in the 2nd bay from the west. Three 4-
light windows to south, as one the north side of the nave, with some mullions
replaced in C19. To the west, 2-light window in Pentewan stone, with trefoil heads
to lights, probably a replacement of the 1891 restoration. The west end of the aisle
has a tall 4-centred arched 3-light window, with the central light taller, cusped
lights, upper tracery and hood mould, probably also of late C19. The east end of the
aisle has a C15 granite window, of 4-lights, with 4-centred arch, cusped lights with
upper Y tracery and hoodmould.
Gabled south porch has raised coped verges and cross finial, limestone date plaque
over doorway with inscription: Holiness unto the Lord MR MDCCCLVI. 4-centred arched
outer doorway with roll mouldings, trefoils in spandrels and square hood mould. To
the left side, a roughly hewn segmental granite archway, giving access to the holy
well (q.v.). Interior of porch has granite floor and plain wagon roof with moulded
ribs, ceiled. Inner tall 4-centred arched roll-moulded doorway, door with raised
studded rim and battens, possibly re-made in 1856.
2-stage tower without plinth, with small weathered buttresses at junction between to
south aisle and nave. First stage has moulded string course, and rising from this
corner pilasters with moulded tops, as vestigial buttresses; to string course and
embattled parapet, rebuilt in the late C19. Low west door with 4-centred arch,
chamfered, with plain C19 door with hood mould and relieving arch; 3-light window
above, rebuilt in late C19, with cusped lights and upper tracery, 4-centred arch and
hood mould with relieving arch. 2nd stage has 3-light bell-opening to each side with
cusped lights and upper tracery, 4-centred arch with hood mould and slate louvres.
To south a rectangular chamfered lancet below the bell-opening.
Interior Plastered walls and granite floor. Both nave and chancel, and south aisle,
retain C15 wagon roof, restored in early C19, with some wall-plates replaced in the
wrong order. Nave and chancel in one, with 17-bay roof, unceiled, with moulded ribs
and carved bosses; parts of C15 structure remaining, mostly of C19. 7-bay arcade
between nave and chancel and south aisle; this has 4-centred arches, with 2 orders of
mouldings, Pevsner A-type piers with ring capitals, 2 piers and arches at east end in
granite, others in Pentewan stone. The north side of the chancel has a 3-centred
arched hollow-chamfered doorway, set in a flat-headed surround with wave moulding,
C18 door with strap hinges. The south aisle has a 17-bay roof, ceiled, moulded ribs
and bosses, more wall-plate remaining than in nave. Tudor arch to south doorway.
Granite steps up to tower arch, a tall 4-centred arch with impost mouldings. C19
wooden screen tower arch. West door has heavy flat granite lintel serving as cill
for west window.
Fittings : Octagonal granite font in south aisle, appears of C19. Pulpit in nave,
made from late C15/early C16 bench ends. Reading desk and sanctuary chair also made
from bench ends. C18 reredos panelling and communion rail with turned balusters.
In south aisle, a carved stone mask corbel. In nave, Royal coat of arms of James II,
painted on board, dated 1685. Panelled pews of 1842 in nave and south aisle.
Monuments in nave: early C18 slate tablet with incised border and central panel with
verses, to Edmund Constable, 1716. In south aisle, a marble sarcophagus on slate
ground, with pediment and shield of arms, to Harriot Graham, 1833.
Glass: chancel north window has fragments of late C15 stained glass, believed to be
figures of St Sampson and St Anthony. Chancel east window of 1898, south aisle east
window 1907, other windows some later stained glass and lattice glazing.
(Sources: Redcliffe, E.: Buildings of England: Cornwall 1970. Fenwick, J.: The
Parish of St Sampson 1986).
Listing NGR: SX1205655163