St Levan

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St Levan — Cornwall, England

St. Levan is a quiet, tiny village located not far from Lands End and is known for its historic church whose patron saint St. Selevan has given his name to the parish.

St. LevanThe church of St. Levan, St Levan's stone and the Holy Well of St Levan which lies beside a restored footpath leading to Porth Chapel Beach, are steeped in legend and history. There have been excavations in the parish that indicate habitation as early as 2500 B.C. with evidence that the Church and Churchyard were part of a small hamlet and an Inn. The parish church is itself steeped in history, with artifacts dating back to the early 12th and 13th centuries still intact and blending with the restorations that have been made. There are two unusual features in the Churchyard, one of which is the unusual coffin rest at the northern gate and the other is St. Levan's stone. The legend is that the saint used this stone as a seat, and he split the stone in two with his staff. The prophecy he made was that if anyone can mount a loaded pack horse and ride through the split in the rock, then the world would come to an end. It is also believed that in pre-Christian times the stone was deemed to be a Holy Rock, just as the holy well at St. Levan was revered in pre-Christian times. The well is said to have healing powers and is used even now for baptisms.

Due to the fact that St. Levan was once part of the parish of St. Buryan, many of the early records of the town were lost when St. Levan became an independent parish. However, there are still marriage registries that date back to the 1500's for those whose interest lie in genealogy.

St. Levan has many picturesque views of the sea and the surrounding cliffs that lead to the harbors, the beaches and coves. The village has retained its farming and fishing traditions for centuries and in the past shell fishing was a major part of the economy. There are also many paths leading to other points of interest in the surrounding area, such .the site of the first transatlantic cable laid on the south coast near Porthcurno, or Logan Rock, a huge boulder that was able to be rocked by a single person. In 1824 it was dislodged by some sailors, and at great expense they were ordered to put it back in place. Logan Rock has become known more for this incident rather than for its original interest which is its prehistory as a Promontory Fort.

Be certain to visit the Minack Theatre, a Greek-style theatre which is literally a theater under the stars in nearby Porthcurno, built by the determination of Rowena Cade over a period of years. The theater, inaugurated in 1932, uses the natural shape of the cliffs giving a spectacular view of the ocean with the magic of the stars once the sun has set. There is a visitor's center that tells the entire history of the theater and of its benefactor Rowena Cade.

While there, also visit the Museum of Submarine Telegraphy, a unique museum with hands on displays and guides to show you how we talked to the world from the Victorian era through the present time.

Where is St. Levan?

St Levan is located in Cornwall, near Lands End, on the B3315 road. Penzance is the nearest populated area, located 8.5 miles away, this is just a 15 minute drive by car.

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