Southwest Holiday Cottages

Town Of PENZANCE

The town of Penzance in Cornwall has the Cornish name of Penzans. It is quite near to St Ives which is a very popular tourist destination.        
From 1512 onwards Penzance has been given the grant of many Royal Charters. The  population is over 20 000 so it is a decent sized town..

There are a large number of stone axes from prehistoric times  which have been found in many different areas of Great Britain which it is thought may have come from West Cornwall and it is interesting to think that West Cornwall may have been involved in trade back in prehistoric times to this extent.  In the Bronze Age  the first signs of a Penzance settlement have been found in tre form of  items such as a spear head and a knife and a lot of pottery was found at Tredarvah.  It is thought that the defensive   earthwork called Lescudjack  is from the Iron Age and the Iron Age came after the Bronze Age. .William Hals in approximately 1730 mentioned ramparts and the area is approximately 3 acres.
Due to the scarcity of written records it has been difficult to determine how much influence the Romans had in Cornwall during the days of the Roman Empire but in recent years there has been found more evidence of the Romans  in Cornwall. There was a Roman Fort in Lanstalon in 54 AD  and a Roman Fort has been discovered at Calstock but Calstock is very near to Devon and so is quite a way from Penzance. But there are  bits of evidence indicating Romans reached Penzance  including a find of the emperor Vespasian two coins in a  cemetery in Penzance  and Vespasian was the Emperor from  69 to 79 AD and these are in Penlee House  Museum.  A Constantine  The Great (another Roman Emperor) coin was found at Alverton. Lots of Roman coins have been discovered at Kerris and Marazion Marsh. But just because soldiers may have entered and established a fort or more in Cornwall it does not let us know if there were any  significant sized settlements of Romans in the county. Alverton is part of Penzance.  

Penzance for some reason is not  documented in the Doomsday Book in the Eleventh Century AD  but the  Manor  Of Alwarton which included Penzance is in it  and it is stated that the manor was  owned by  Alward but this was taken over by a relative of William The Conqueror being  Robert the Count Of Mortain.  The name Alward suggests a Saxon influence in the area.
The Assize Roll in 1284 mentions Pensans which  is another Cornish name for Penzance.  Penzance got its name from a church and in  1429 AD it is documented that a licence was issued to the Chapel of St Gabriel and St Raphael.
There is a Church of St Mary documented in 1548. In 1379 it is documented that there was  a licence for the  chapel of Blessed Mary of  Pensande.

In medieval times fairs were held in Penzance and these had  a Royal Charter one of which was given by King Edward  in 1332 to  Alice de Lisle.
Fishing boats were mentioned in 1322  regarding the Manor of Alverton.  
The Manor  Of Alverton had an impact on taxation in Penzance until   1614.
It is not very well known but Turkish Pirates used  to raid Penzance in  Medieval times.   Another little known historical fact is that after the Spanish Amada  in  Queen Elizabeth the Firsts reign  occuured , the Spanish leader  Don Carlos  de  Amesquita in 1595 raided Penzance and not that much later Penzance being made a borough in 1614 by King James the First  this being very important for Penzance.


The schools in Penzance include 2 comprehensive schools. There is a museum and art gallery.. Penzance has a rugby team.
 Maria Branwell was born in Penzance and she had Charlotte Bronte as a daughter. Sir Humphry Davy was born in Penzance.
Penzance is a port. .
Penzance was made even more known by the popular opera the Pirates Of  Penzance.
Penzance is twinned with not just one but with towns from four different countries being in  Australia , France,  The United States Of America and Germany.






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