Place:St. Austell, Cornwall, England

NameSt. Austell
Alt namesSaint Austellsource: Getty Vocabulary Program
Sen Ostellsource: Wikipedia
St. Austellsource: Getty Vocabulary Program
TypeTown, Civil parish, Urban district
Coordinates50.333°N 4.8°W
Located inCornwall, England
See alsoPowder Hundred, Cornwall, Englandhundred in which it was located
St. Austell Rural, Cornwall, Englandrural district covering the surrounding area 1894-1974
St. Austell Registration District, Cornwall, Englandregistration district of which it was part 1837-1974
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog
source: Family History Library Catalog
source: Family History Library Catalog
source: Family History Library Catalog
source: Family History Library Catalog
the following text is based on an article in Wikipedia

St. Austell (Cornish: Austol) is a civil parish and major town in Cornwall, England. It is situated on the south coast approximately 10 miles (16 km) south of Bodmin and 30 miles (48 km) west of the border with Devon.

St. Austell is one of the largest towns in Cornwall: in the 2011 Census the civil parish had a population of 19,958, with a total of 34,700 living in the wider area comprising several other civil parishes. [See subsection "Local Government" in Wikipedia.]

Despite its size St. Austell was never made a municipal borough until 1968 when it merged with Fowey. The civil parish was separated into St. Austell Urban and St. Austell Rural (covering the china clay mining area north of the town as well as a detached area to the south) in 1894. In 1934 it was expanded by gaining a large section of St. Austell Rural District, namely the civil parishes of Mevagissey, St. Austell Rural, and St. Blazey, as well as parts of the civil parishes of Roche, St. Ewe, Gorran or St. Goran, St. Mewan, and Tywardreath. (See the map from A Vision of Britain through Time.)

St. Austell includes the former mining hamlet of Boscoppa, and also Edgcumbe or Edgcumbe Green, Porthpean and Chy-an-Gwal.


One of the earliest references to St Austell is in John Leland's Itinerary, where he says "At S. Austelles is nothing notable but the paroch chirch".[4]

Not long after William Cookworthy discovered china clay at Tregonning Hill in west Cornwall [circa 1750], the same mineral was found in greater quantity in Hensbarrow Downs north of St Austell. Clay mining soon took over from tin and copper mining as the principal industry in the area, and this eventually contributed enormously to the growth of the town. The clay industry really only came into its own during the mid 19th to early 20th century, at a time when the falling prices of tin and other metals forced many mines to close down or convert to clay mining. The success and high profitability of the industry attracted many families whose breadwinner had been put out of work by the depression in the local metal mining industry, and increased the population of the town considerably. This meant that more shops and businesses took root, providing more jobs and improving trade. This, along with other factors, led to St. Austell becoming one of the ten most important commercial centres of Cornwall.

Research Tips

One of the many maps available on A Vision of Britain through Time is one from the Ordnance Survey Series of 1900 illustrating the parish boundaries of Cornwall at the turn of the 20th century. This map blows up to show all the parishes and many of the small villages and hamlets.

The following websites have pages explaining their provisions in WeRelate's Repository Section. Some provide free online databases.

  • GENUKI makes a great many suggestions as to other websites with worthwhile information about Cornwall as well as providing 19th century descriptions of each of the ecclesiastical parishes.
  • FamilySearch Wiki provides a similar information service to GENUKI which may be more up-to-date.
  • A Vision of Britain through Time has
  1. organization charts of the hierarchies of parishes within hundreds, registration districts and rural and urban districts of the 20th century
  2. excerpts from a gazetteer of circa 1870 outlining individual towns and parishes
  3. reviews of population through the time period 1800-1960
  • More local sources can often be found by referring to "What Links Here" in the column on the left.

In addition a rootsweb page titled St. Austell Area: Parishes, Genealogy includes a large number of transcriptions from baptisms, marriages, and burials registers, and associated documents such as the Tithe Apportionment Index of 1841, Manorial Documents, workhouse census records, amd directory transcriptions from 1783 to 1873 for the parish of St. Austell, St. Blazey, Tywardreath, Par and other local places.

This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at St Austell. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.