St Denis stands at the centre of its village which commands a crossing of the river Tamar, its tall tower visible from some way off.
A small cottage of Tudor origin inhabits the churchyard, the remnants of a larger building. Although locked, the church has a notice saying that the key can be obtained from the helpful people who live here.
The tall tower has a quatrefoil decoration around its base which is reminiscent of Launceston and the former St Mary’s Truro (now the south aisle of the cathedral).
Inside, the church has a nave and south aisle only. There is no sign of a north transept.
It was much ’embellished’ by an incumbent, the Rev RS Smith, who served here 1849-1901. He oversaw the re-building of the chancel and appears to have resisted the temptation to install a rood screen or raise the chancel.
Pevsner speaks of a ‘colourful rood screen’ but, as the photo shows, there is none
The result is a heavily-restored but pleasing space. Look out for:
- The simple C12 font which is a simple bowl of granite
- The simple pulpit with a hint of some rood screen woodwork on the wall behind it
- The various bench ends which have the usual images of the Passion, a woodcock and a partridge (although we could recognise neither)
- The animal bench ends, one of which look suspiciously like a baboon
- The small brass to Leonard Loves, the Receiver General of taxes for Devon and Cornwall for Elizabeth 1 who was, allegedly, dug up after death and his body burned
- A slate slab to Walter Robins (d1706)