Friday, 12 July 2019

The Secretive Menacuddle Holy Well and Chapel, Cornwall

Menacuddle Chapel and waterfall

We hadn't been to the Menacuddle Holy Well and Chapel for quite a while. When we arrived today it was very noticeable that there has been some love and attention given to the site.

The Chapel dates back to the 15th century and is now a Grade II listed building.  It is aligned east-west with the east wall built against the natural rock face. Below is an old etching of the chapel I came across a while back - a little artistic licence has been used by the artist!
An old drawing of Menacuddle Well Chape;
This is the reality as to how the Menacuddle Well Chapel looks today (below).

Menacuddle chapel

The photo below, of the entrance to the chapel, shows how it is built against the rock face.

The chapel now looks all neat and tidy - perhaps a little too clean? A matter of opinion, of course.

The Menacuddle Vhapel housing the Holy Well

On a previous visit I snapped a photo and there was moss and lichen on the roof and sides of the chapel. This somehow made it more mysterious and gave the building a different feel.

The Menacuddle Chapel and Holy Well

The Holy spring water was once held in high regard for its curative powers. Sick children were regularly bathed here and the Victorians  recommended the drinking of its salubrious fluid. It was also used to treat ulcers. 

A local tradition was to throw a bent pin into the water for good luck.

The Holy Well at Menacuddle, Cornwall.

The waterfall is part of the St.Austell River, or Vinnick River, and was often known as the White River. In certain weather conditions the water would become a milky white from local china clay.

The waterfall near the chapel at Menacuddle, Cornwall

On the opposite of the river to the chapel is the Druids Chair made from solid granite - as below. It has also been called King Arthur's Seat. A bit of a mystery - but it's quite comfortable - for a rock!

The Druid's Chair at Menacuddle, Cornwall

A couple of photos now of the small gardens and pond.

The surroundings of Menacuddle

Gardens by the Menacuddle Holy Well & Chapel

Ah yes, and I saw this painted stone on the wall. On the back it says that it was painted by Rosie, aged 8. So there is still magic here, it hasn't all been swept away.

A painted stone by 'Rosie' at Menacuddle Holy Well, Cornwall

Menacuddle  isn't that well sign posted. If visiting by car take the the Bodmin Road from St.Austell town. It's only a few minutes drive but can easily be missed. The entrance only has a small sign ….

Entrance from road to Menacuddle Holy Well & Chapel

Look out for the Elderly People sign - the entrance is just after this.

There is parking but only for about four cars. But, in saying this, I have never seen anyone else at the chapel and well when I have made a visit.

Warning of Elderly People sign just before Menacuddle Holy Wll


  1. Of all the lovely places you take us this place has something really special about it. The first photo is delightful with the stream and waterfall, I love the little stone painted by Rosie aged 8.
    Beautiful photo's as always Mike, these are special.

    1. Thank you David, it's somewhere that very few people seem to visit. I like to see these old Holy Wells. I've put Rosie's stone photo on Facebook and Twitter hoping she might somehow get to see it. Have an interesting weekend.

  2. What a magical place! I personally like the look of moss on stone and I’d like to have the granite chair in my garden:-)

    1. Hello Ann. I preferred the moss look that the chapel used to have, it somehow made it more magical and mysterious. The granite chair is a mystery, I can't find any information as to it's origin. This was once private land so I guess it could have been made by the then owner many years back.

    2. Must visit this sometime. I thought it was just in a cave lol. Thanks for sharing your cornish photos.

    3. Hello, thank you for your comment, good wishes.

  3. I shall check this out, somewhere to go to get away from the covid spreaders :-)

    1. Thank you for leaving a comment, Amanda. Apologies for being slow at replying, somehow I missed your comment. All good wishes.
      P.S. Sadly looks like the coronavirus will be with us for a while.

  4. Visited the well today as it is accessible through the back garden at the hotel we are staying at. The owner said go have a look and we were blown away. Such a beautiful tranquil place. Hubby and I love history and could imagine what it looked like in the 14th century 🤔

    1. So glad you liked Menacuddle, it's a special place with a fascinating history. I hope you enjoy the rest of your stay, all good wishes ~ Mike.

  5. I hope to be that way before too long, and must see such a magical mysterious little place - WONDERFUL PHOTOS! (Presently stuck in Canterbury, another place of old mysteries!)
    Thanks for sharing. Nicky B.

    1. Thank you for leaving a comment and hope you manage to get to Cornwall - though Canterbury isn't a bad place to be!! Good wishes.

  6. Wow, we're in Cornwall on holiday and visited here yesterday... Our magical mystery Monday. It did not disappoint. I loved the history behind Menacuddle Well. Thank you to The Friends of Menacuddle Well, without you there would be no such place for usto discover.

    1. Glad you enjoyed Menacuddle , thanks for leaving a comment.



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