Cornwall Industrial Settlements Initiative
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Restormel Borough Council
Main period of  industrial  settlement growth: 1840s; 1893-1920s
Study Area: Hensbarrow
NGR: Mid-west Cornwall, about 3 miles north St Austell
Main industry: China clay (earlier tin)

Industrial history and significance

Stenalees is in a sense a microcosm, a palimpsest, of all the various trends and processes that have overtaken the Hensbarrow massif over many centuries. The late medieval agricultural expansion into the moorland landscape is still discernible here, but with industrial sites around, and even within the study area, that may yet retain evidence of early tin streaming, tin mining and early (late 18th/early 19th century) clay working. Cutting across this was a developing communications pattern of roads and railways, allowing increasing exploitation of what was to become one of the main chain clay producing areas to the south and west of Stenalees.

Stenalees is less a nucleated village, more a dispersed conglomerate of inter-related settlements; it is in many respects a settlement that never finished its development; it is frozen in the midst of becoming a recognizable, nucleated place. The different strands of its development over both time and space are still discernible mediaeval hamlets, 19th century industrial smallholdings, mid 19th century parochial centre and hierarchical landscape, early 20th century ribbon development - and have never quite coalesced.

Alternative local centres of population provided their own range of services and facilities, so that although it had church, school, shops, chapels, and trades they never developed to the full range or scale in Stenalees. Stenalees, like the more dominant centres nearby (Bugle for instance) only makes sense when seen in relation to all the other adjoining villages and centres that shared these economic and social functions.


The downloads offered below represent the different elements of the CISI Stenalees Report including the core text and the four illustrative map figures.
 Title Description Format Size
CISI Stenalees report Report text. Format type: PDF


Figure 1 Location map Format type: PDF 383kb
Figure 2a Historical development map Format type: PDF 216kb
Figure 2b " Format type: PDF 286kb
Figure 3a Surviving historical components map Format type: PDF 190kb
Figure 3b " Format type: PDF 222kb
Figure 4a Gazetteer sites, existing designations and recommendations map Format type: PDF 215kb
Figure 4b " Format type: PDF 233kb

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Last Updated: 16/12/2004. © Cornwall County Council, Historic Environment Service.