Callington

Street Map

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Callington (Cornish: Kelliwik) is a civil parish and town in southeast Cornwall, England, United Kingdom about 7 miles (11 km) north of Saltash and 9 miles (14 km) south of Launceston.

Callington parish had a population of 4,783 in 2001, according to the 2001 census.

The town is situated in east Cornwall between Dartmoor to the east and Bodmin Moor to the west. A former agricultural market town, it lies at the intersection of the south-north A388 Saltash to Launceston road and the east-west A390 Tavistock to Liskeard road.

Kit Hill is a mile northeast of the town and rises to 333 metres (1,093 ft) with views of Dartmoor, Bodmin Moor and the River Tamar.

The hamlets of Bowling Green, Frogwell, Kelly Bray and Newbridge are in the parish.

Callington railway station was the terminus of a branch line from Bere Alston, the junction with the Southern Railway’s Tavistock to Plymouth line. The railway line beyond Gunnislake to the Callington terminus was closed in the 1960s, due to low usage and difficult operating conditions on the final sections of the line due to several severe gradients and speed restrictions. One can still travel by rail on the Tamar Valley Line from Plymouth as far as Gunnislake via Bere Alston, where trains reverse. For most of its journey the line follows the River Tamar. The nearest mainline train station to Callington is at Saltash.

Food manufacturer Ginsters is the largest employer in the town and employs hundreds of locals as well as many immigrants who have arrived as a consequence of the recent accession to the EU of a number of Eastern European countries.

Ginsters uses local produce in many of its products, buying potatoes and other vegetables from local farmers and suppliers.

Cornwall is a predominantly low wage economy with a high proportion of its income being derived from agriculture and tourism.

The town has long been cited as the site of the ancient tribal capital of the Kingdom of Cornwall and Arthurian base, known in the sources as Celliwig. References to it are made repeatedly, particularly in the Welsh Triads and other manuscripts. However Callington is only the foremost among several contending possible locations. Nearby ancient monuments include Castlewitch Henge with a diameter of 96m and Cadsonbury Iron Age hillfort, as well as Dupath Well built in 1510 on the site of an ancient sacred spring.

In the 18th century, Callington was one of the most important mining areas in Great Britain. Deposits of silver were found nearby in Silver Valley. Today, the area is marked by mining remains, but there are no active mines. However, granite is still quarried on Hingston Down.

The former Callington constituency, a rotten borough, elected two members to the unreformed House of Commons but was abolished by the Reform Act 1832. The town is now in the South East Cornwall constituency.

St Mary’s Church was originally a chapel of ease to South Hill; it was consecrated in 1438 and then had two aisles and a buttressed tower; a second north aisle was added in 1882. Unusually for Cornwall there is a clerestory; the wagon roofs are old. The parish church contains the fine brass of Nicholas Assheton and his wife, 1466.

In recent years, the town has seen much residential development with more, including social housing, planned for the next few years. The neighbouring village of Kelly Bray has almost doubled in size in recent years with houses still being built in the area.

Callington is twinned with Guipavas in Brittany, France, and Barsbüttel near Hamburg in Germany.

Note: this page is partly based on a Wikipedia page. Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. Where possible, text is being updated to original, fully referenced research. ‘Our photos’ means we took the photographs. The Street View and street map visuals are courtesy of Google.

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