The Parish Church of St. Materiana, Tintagel, was built almost entirely as it appears today, in its cruciform shape of nave, chancel and transepts, between the years 1080 and 1150 in the time of the first Norman earls of Cornwall, Robert of Mortain and his son William.
The church is dedicated to St Materiana, who has been identified with St Madryn, a princess of Gwent, and who according to tradition, evangelised these parts about 500AD, and whose other and chief shrine lay at Minster, a few miles to the east, where her relics were preserved until the Reformation which swept all these things away.
The Church is open to visitors and for private prayer every day.
Tintagel is also responsible for the ancient chapel at Trethevy, a hamlet in north Cornwall, midway between the villages of Tintagel and Boscastle in the civil parish of Tintagel.
Trethevy has a number of historic buildings and is an early Christian site. At the heart of Trethevy, surrounded by farm buildings and converted barns is Saint Piran’s Chapel, dating from at least the mid fifteenth century and a holy well also dedicated to Saint Piran. The well is built over with a mid twentieth century slate beehive and topped with an iron cross.
It is believed by some that the hermitage of Saint Nectan was beside a waterfall, Saint Nectan’s Kieve, in Saint Nectan’s Glen.
Nectan is supposed to have lived above the falls having sailed from Wales on a millstone and was buried nearby. The waterfall is a popular tourist destination and is viewed by some as a sacred site.
The first mention of a chapel of St. Piran was in 1457, when Parson Gregory had licence from the Bishop to celebrate Mass in the chapels of St. Piran and St. Dionysius. It would seem to refer to the small ancient building at Trethevy.
After the Reformation the building seems to have been used for farm purposes. In 1941 Mr Sidney Harris gave the building back to the Church. It has been maintained as a chapel ever since. The Chapel is open every day to visitors and for private prayer.
Services of Evening Prayer are held on the last Sunday of each month from May until October at 3.30pm. and a Carol Service is held each December.