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Coordinates: 50°27′13″N 4°27′54″W / 50.4536, -4.4651
Cornish: Lys Kerwyd
Stuart House, Barras Street, Liskeard - - 666023
Stuart House

Cornwall UK location map
Red pog.svg

Red pog.svg Liskeard shown within Cornwall
Population 8,656 (2001)
OS grid reference SX251645
Parish Liskeard
Unitary authority Cornwall
Ceremonial county Cornwall
Region South West
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town LISKEARD
Postcode district PL14
Dialling code 01579
Police Devon and Cornwall
Fire Cornwall
Ambulance South Western
EU Parliament South West England
UK Parliament South East Cornwall
List of places: UK • England • Cornwall

Liskeard (pronounced /lɪsˈkɑrd/ (deprecated template);[1] Cornish: Lys Kerwyd or Lyskerrys) is an ancient stannary and market town and civil parish in south east Cornwall, England, United Kingdom[2].

Liskeard is situated approximately 20 miles (32 km) west of Plymouth, 14 miles (23 km) west of the River Tamar and the border with Devon, and 12 miles (20 km) east of Bodmin. The town is at the head of the Looe valley in the ancient hundred of West Wivelshire and has a population of 8,656[3]. Liskeard was the base of the former Caradon District Council and it still has a town council.

The coves and resorts of the south Cornish coast are within easy reach to the south of Liskeard. Bodmin Moor lies to the northwest. The A38 trunk road used to pass through the town centre but a dual carriageway bypass now carries traffic south of the town leaving the town centre accessible but with low traffic levels.


A Norman castle was built here after the Conquest but it was disused later in the Middle Ages. By 1538 when visited by John Leland only a few insignificant remains were to be seen.[4]

Liskeard was one of the 17 Antiqua maneria of the Duchy of Cornwall.[5] The market charter was granted by Richard, Earl of Cornwall (brother of Henry III) in 1240. Since then, it has been an important centre for agriculture.

The town went through a period of economic prosperity during the pre-20th century boom in tin mining, becoming a key centre in the industry as a location for a stannary and coinage.

Present dayEdit

Liskeard is one of the few towns in Cornwall still to have a weekly livestock market. Market day is Thursday.

Local business largely comprises small independent establishments, many specialising in unique local products. Some shops retain original Victorian shopfronts and interiors.

Liskeard is a popular local town serving a wide local area of small villages and is one of the main gateways to Bodmin Moor. There is a good range of restaurants, cafes and pubs in the town.

Liskeard holds a very popular carnival every June the 2009s carnival even featured in Google maps 'Street View'.[2]

Every July Liskeard holds one of the biggest agricultural shows in the region. The Liskeard Show is always held on the second Saturday in July.[3]


Liskeard OS Atlas 1920 half inch

Liskeard and District in the 1920s


Liskeard has an oceanic climate (Köppen climate classification Cfb).

Weather averages for Liskeard
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 8 (46) 8 (46) 9 (48) 12 (54) 14 (57) 17 (63) 19 (66) 19 (66) 17 (63) 14 (57) 11 (52) 9 (48) 13 (55)
Average low °C (°F) 3 (37) 3 (37) 4 (39) 5 (41) 8 (46) 11 (52) 13 (55) 13 (55) 11 (52) 9 (48) 6 (43) 4 (39) 8 (46)

Precipitation mm (inch)

Source: Weather Channel[6] 4 April 2009

Notable buildingsEdit

The Guildhall, Market Street, Liskeard - - 666030

Liskeard Guildhall

The town boasts St. Martin's, the third largest church in Cornwall (after Truro Cathedral and Bodmin parish church). Built on the site of the former Norman church, the oldest parts of the current structure date back to the 15th century. Other places of worship include a Roman Catholic church and Methodist chapels.[7]

  • Foresters Hall - now houses the tourist information office, (The Foresters still meet in the town at the Public Rooms in West Street)
  • Stuart House (on The Parade) - used by Charles I as a lodging in 1644, when chasing the Parliamentarians.[8] Restored, it is now used as a community building for arts, heritage and community events
  • The Guildhall - built in 1859 - has a prominent clock tower.
  • The Public Hall - constructed in 1890
  • Webb's House - Formerly Webb's Hotel - a classic early Victorian market-town hotel featuring in royal visits, parliamentary declarations and much more but recently converted into flats and is the home of the local newspaper The Cornish Times.
  • Pencubitt House - built in 1897 for a wealthy wool merchant J. H. Blamey. The house was designed by local architect John Sansom responsible for many Liskeard homes of that period[9]
  • The Liskeard Union Workhouse, architect John Foulston of Plymouth (later the Lamellion Hospital)


For further details of the parliamentary history of the town see Liskeard (UK Parliament constituency)

In the year 1294, Liskeard began to send two members to Parliament, but this was reduced to one by the 1832 Reform Act. The MPs included Edward Gibbon, author of The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, and Isaac Foot.[10]

Liskeard is now part of the South East Cornwall constituency, and is presently represented by Conservative Sheryll Murray


Secondary state education is provided at Liskeard School and Community College . In 1908, the County School, built by the Cornwall Education Committee, was opened at Old Road, Liskeard. In 1945, its name was changed to Liskeard Grammar School . The nearest independent schools are at Plymouth and Tavistock. The Other schools in Liskeard are: Hillfort Primary School(Located: Old Road) (Age Range:4-11) which was opened in September 2006 on the Liskeard Junior School site by merging Liskeard Junior School and Liskeard Infant School (which was in West Street), and St Martin's CofE VA School (Located: Lake Lane) (Age Range: 5-11).[11].


Liskeard railway station, on the London to Penzance Cornish Main Line, and the A38 trunk road provide the town with rapid access to Plymouth, the rest of Cornwall and the motorway network. The town is also served by the Looe Valley branch line to Looe. There are regular bus services to various parts of Cornwall.

Leisure and sportsEdit

There is a leisure centre at Lux Park on the north side of the town: there is a bowling club on the southern side. The soccer, rugby and cricket clubs are all well-supported. The town has a King George V Playing Field. Live music and various theatrical events frequently take place in the unusual but acoustically good Carnglaze Caverns just to the north.

Leisure trailsEdit

There are three trails, each has its own blue commemorative plaque (these were unveiled by former town mayor, Sandra Preston)

  • Footpath from the town to the railway station: the path was built by Thomas Lang, who was a former mayor, in 1890.
  • Trail around the north of the town centre, including the Parade and the ornamental fountain. The fountain was given to the town by Michael Loam, whose father invented the Man engine (a device for lifting men up and down mineshafts, and used in many mines throughout Cornwall & West Devon).
  • Trail around the southern part of the town, commemorating Lt. Lapenotière, who brought back the news of the Battle of Trafalgar to England. For this Lt. Lapenotière was given a silver spice sprinkler by King George III. The sprinkler is still owned by the mayor's office, and is exhibited occasionally.


Liskeard has a sizeable Masonic presence with no fewer than 6 Masonic bodies meeting at the Masonic Hall in The Parade, (foundation dates in brackets)[12]

St Martin's Lodge No. 510 (5 March 1845);

St Martin's Chapter No. 510 (2 November 1864);

St Martin's Lodge of Mark Master Masons No. 379 (8 March 1887);

St Martin's Lodge of Royal Ark Mariners No. 379 (4 May 1933);

Duchy Chapter of the Ancient & Accepted Rite of the Rose Croix of Heredom No. 289 (10 December 1931)

Duchy Conclave of the Order of the Secret Monitor No. 260 (8 April 1975)

Twinning Edit

People associated with the townEdit

See also the category: People from Liskeard


  1. ^ Often incorrectly stressed on the first syllable
  2. ^ Ordnance Survey: Landranger map sheet 201 Plymouth & Launceston ISBN 9780319231463
  3. ^ Office for National statistics : Census 2001 : Parish Headcounts : Caradon Retrieved 30 January 2010
  4. ^ Oman, Sir Charles (1926) Castles; "Cornwall and its castles", p. 109. London: Great Western Railway
  5. ^ Hatcher, John (1970) Rural Economy and Society in the Duchy of Cornwall 1300-1500. Cambridge University Press ISBN 0521085500
  6. ^ Liskeard travel information Weather Channel UK Retrieved 4 April 2009
  7. ^ "Liskeard Churches". Retrieved 2009-04-13. 
  8. ^ Liskeard & District Museum
  9. ^ Pencubitt House History
  10. ^ Liskeard and Its People by Bernard W. Deacon ISBN 095153551X
  11. ^ [1]
  12. ^ Cornwall Masonic yearbook 2009/10
  13. ^ <Harding Family. A Short History and Narrtive Pedigree From 1480 to the present day. Nicholas John Royal. Published privately 1970

External linksEdit

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Liskeard. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.

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