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Truro, Cornwall

City of Truro, Cornwall

Truro is a city in Cornwall, England, United Kingdom.


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The bustling cathedral city of Truro is the centre for administration, commerce and tourism for the county of Cornwall.

Truro has a population of 20,920 (2001 census). Residents of Truro are known as Truronians.

The city is well-known for its cathedral (completed in 1910), as well as its cobbled streets, open spaces and many examples of Georgian architecture. It is also the location of the Royal Cornwall Museum, the Hall for Cornwall, Cornwall's Courts of Justice and Cornwall County Council's Old County Hall, a Grade II listed building.

Truro, called after Tri-veru meaning three rivers which includes the Rivers Kenwyn and Allen, has developed close to the Truro river and with good road and rail links is within easy reach of almost every part of Cornwall.

There has been a town here since the 12th century when Richard Lucy, a minister of Henry II built a castle on the hill. During the 14th century Truro was an important port with ships sailing into Lemon Quay. It was also one of the five 'stannary' towns in Cornwall. This was where the locally mined tin and copper was brought, twice a year, for assaying and stamping and then onward shipment from the port. In the 16th century Queen Elizabeth I granted Truro its own charter, enabling a measure of self government and the election of a mayor. There was a mint in Truro during the civil war in the 17th century. Just outside Truro, at Tresillian, the Royalists, led by Sir Ralph Hopton surrendered to Sir Thomas Fairfax, with discussions taking place at the Wheel Inn.

During the years there had been many disputes with the fast growing town and port of Falmouth over ownership of the Truro river and eventually the shipping trade was lost to Falmouth, and ownership of the river was settled with half becoming the river Fal. However it was in the 18th and 19th centuries that Truro began to grow. Tin prices increased on the world-wide market. Town houses were built by wealthy land and mine owners, and Truro was called the 'London' of Cornwall, a centre for fashionable, wealthy and influential people who would meet at the Assembly Rooms on High Cross to socialise or watch a play at the theatre there. The Royal Institution of Cornwall was founded in 1818.

The other important event for Truro in the 19th century was the Bishopric of Truro Bill which was passed by parliament in 1876, creating the Diocese of Truro. Formerly, Cornwall was part of the diocese of Exeter, which meant a long cross-country journey for the Bishop to visit. It was Bishop Philpotts of Exeter who was instrumental in setting up the Diocese of Truro. The first Bishop, Edward White Benson, was appointed in 1877. This was also the same year that Queen Victoria granted Truro city status. It was the first bishop who thought that the people of Cornwall should have their own cathedral. The architect appointed was John Loughborough Pearson. After the laying of the foundation stones in May 1880, by the Prince of Wales who later became Edward VII, building started but it was to be 30 years before the cathedral was completed with its three towers that dominate the city's skyline visible from all directions.

Official Town of Truro, Cornwall website: www.truro.gov.uk


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