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HER Number:21957.20
Name:LANHERNE - Medieval country house, Post Medieval nunnery


The present house at Lanherne is of Tudor origin and preserves many original features. Since 1794 it has been a Carmelite convent.

Grid Reference:SW 8720 6590
Parish:Mawgan in Pydar, Restormel, Cornwall
Map:Show location on Streetmap

Protected Status

  • Conservation Area: ST MAWGAN
  • Listed Building (II) 71100: LANHERNE BARTON FARMHOUSE

Other References/Statuses

  • Cornwall HER Listing No.: 1/91
  • OS No. (OS Quarter-sheet and OS No.): SW86NE 2
  • Primary Record No. (1985-2009): 21957.20
  • SMR No. (OS Quarter-sheet and SMR No.): SW86NE 24-24.1

Monument Type(s):

Full description

The present house at Lanherne, close to St Mawgan, is of Tudor origin and preserves many original features. From the C13 to 1794 it was a seat of the Arundell family, since when it has been a Carmelite convent (b9). The extant building has an Elizabethan front, and the back parts are late C17 and late C18 (b11). The nuns are a closed order and the house is not open to visitors (h1). The original house had an oratory in the south-west wing, on the upper floor. On conversion to a convent a new chapel was built on the north side (b8).
"Carmelite convent, formerly the house of the Arundell family. Early C16, possibly including earlier building. Additions of C17, and a rear range of late C17, circa 1700; C18 and C19 additions, including the chapel. The front rainwater heads are dated BRF 1708. Lanherne has been a Carmelite convent since 1794. Slatestone rubble with granite dressings. Slate roof with crested ridge tiles and gable ends. Gable end stacks with rendered shafts. The rear range is in coursed stone rubble; slate roof with gable ends and modillion eaves cornice. Plan: To the front there are 2 parallel ranges; the inner range appears to be the first, with a parallel range built in front circa mid - late C16. At the right end, the chapel was added in C19: To the centre, there is a courtyard, with a wing extended to rear right and left. The courtyard is closed at the rear by a range of circa 1700. Only the outside of the building was accessible at time of survey (May 1987). Exterior: The front is 2-storey, an asymmetrical range in 3 builds. The first range to left has 4 windows; ground floor has panelled double doors with 4-centred arched fanlight, moulded surround with cushion stops, brick and stone relieving arch. To left and right a 3-light granite window with 4-centred arches, hollow-chamfered with floating cornice, the cornice continued to right as a string course. First floor has similar 4-light window to right with king mullion and hood mould. To the centre are 2 similar 2-light windows with hood moulds and image niche between. Pair of fine rainwater heads in lead, dated 1717. At first floor to right a 3-light granite window with cusped lights and hood mould. Granite cornice with lead top, embattled, with a frieze. The gable end of the left side range is visible above. The next build to right has ground floor 8-light window, hollow-chamfered, with 4- centred arch, king mullion and floating cornice; corbelled out above with similar 8- light window which has a blind angled light at the left side. Slate-hung above with the lead frieze continued. The chapel is to end right, with gable end to front; ground floor has similar 5-light window with hood mould and similar 5-light window with hood mould at first floor. 2 courses of ashlar above with the lead frieze continued. Gable end above slate-hung. Attached to the front of the chapel is a low garden wall with a re-used 4-centred arched granite doorway. Set back to end right is a chapel porch, of single storey with loft, with 4-centred arched doorway with double plank doors and image niche above. Single chamfered light to right. The right gable end has 2-light chamfered window at first floor. At the right side there is a straight joint at the end of the main range. The later range to right has panelled double doors in rusticated surround with floating cornice. At first floor three C19 mullion and transom windows and early C18 sashes. Rainwater head dated 1708. The rear is a symmetrical 9-bay front of 2 storeys on cellar with moulded plinth and attic. The cellar windows are 2-light, in granite, with chamfered mullions, segmental arch with keystone. The casements are varied, some with crown glass. Ground floor has mullion and tramson windows with 21 panes below and 9 panes above, with L hinges, segmental arch and keystones. First floor has early C18 32-pane sashes with thick glazing bars and voussoirs. There is a 3-storey addition at the centre with door, 2-light casement of first and second floor. Third bay from right has plank door with floating cornice. Lead rainwater heads and band course at ground and first floor. Hipped dormers to the attic with sashes. Cupola with clock, ogee lead roof with weathervane. The dormers are continued at the right side. Brick arcaded panels to chimneys. The building is said to have been refaced at the back by Sir Christopher Wren. The house was built by one of the earlier Arundells in whose family the Manor had been since 1231, when the marriage to Lady Alice Fulcar, heiress of Lanherne, the manor passed to Sir Remphrey Arundell. The house is said to contain good plasterwork, and an arched-brace roof may survive over the wing along the left side. There are probably also many other interesting internal features." (EH Listing description)

Site history:
1: 1969. NVQ / OS
2: 1978. PAS / CCRA

<1> Norden, J, 1728, Speculi Britanniae Pars (Bibliographic reference). SCO4001.

<2> Lysons, D & S, 1814, Magna Britannia, VOL III, CORNWALL, 220 (Bibliographic reference). SCO3885.

<3> Gilbert, CS, 1820, An Historical and Topographical Survey of the County of Cornwall, VOL 2, 656-658, 661 (Bibliographic reference). SCO3360.

<4> Hitchins, F & Drew, S (Eds), 1824, The History of Cornwall, VOL II, ii, 485 (Bibliographic reference). SCO3595.

<5> Gilbert, D (Ed), 1838, The Parochial History of Cornwall, VOL III, 149 (Bibliographic reference). SCO3362.

<6> Polsue, J (Editor), 1867-72, Lake's Parochial History of Cornwall, VOL 3, 294 (Bibliographic reference). SCO4139.

<7> UNKNOWN, 1914, UNKNOWN TITLE (Unedited Source). SCO7024.

<8> Henderson, C, 1914, Notebooks of Parochial Antiquities, VOL III, 62-65 (Unpublished document). SCO3503.

<9> Henderson, C, 1925, The Cornish Church Guide, 134 (Bibliographic reference). SCO3512.

<10> Doble, GH, 1928, Cornish Saints, NO 39 (Bibliographic reference). SCO3220.

<11> Pevsner, N, 1951, The Buildings of England: Cornwall, 100 (Bibliographic reference). SCO4126.

<12> Ordnance Survey, 1970s, 1:10,000 OS Map (Cartographic materials). SCO4045.

Sources / Further Reading

[1]SCO4001 - Bibliographic reference: Norden, J. 1728. Speculi Britanniae Pars.
[2]SCO3885 - Bibliographic reference: Lysons, D & S. 1814. Magna Britannia. VOL III, CORNWALL, 220.
[3]SCO3360 - Bibliographic reference: Gilbert, CS. 1820. An Historical and Topographical Survey of the County of Cornwall. VOL 2, 656-658, 661.
[4]SCO3595 - Bibliographic reference: Hitchins, F & Drew, S (Eds). 1824. The History of Cornwall. VOL II, ii, 485.
[5]SCO3362 - Bibliographic reference: Gilbert, D (Ed). 1838. The Parochial History of Cornwall. VOL III, 149.
[6]SCO4139 - Bibliographic reference: Polsue, J (Editor). 1867-72. Lake's Parochial History of Cornwall. VOL 3, 294.
[7]SCO7024 - Unedited Source: UNKNOWN. 1914. UNKNOWN TITLE. JRIC.
[8]SCO3503 - Unpublished document: Henderson, C. 1914. Notebooks of Parochial Antiquities. MS At RIC. VOL III, 62-65.
[9]SCO3512 - Bibliographic reference: Henderson, C. 1925. The Cornish Church Guide. 134.
[10]SCO3220 - Bibliographic reference: Doble, GH. 1928. Cornish Saints. NO 39.
[11]SCO4126 - Bibliographic reference: Pevsner, N. 1951. The Buildings of England: Cornwall. 100.
[12]SCO4045 - Cartographic materials: Ordnance Survey. 1970s. 1:10,000 OS Map.

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Related records

21957Part of: LANHERNE - Early Medieval settlement, Medieval settlement (Place Name)
MCO56173Related to: LANHERNE - C16 boundary park wall (Building)