About Us - St Nicholas & St Faith
The Borough of Saltash was founded by one of the de Valletorts, Lords of Trematon Castles, in the mid 12th century. The founder provided a large chapel for the inhabitants. It was erected beside the central market square of the new town. The Chapel was dedicated to St Nichols, patron Saint of travellers, sailors and safe journeys etc - appropriate for a place where an ancient highway crossed an important estuary by means of a ferry.
For more than 700 years St Nicholas’s Chapel was a chapel-of-ease, subordinate to the Mother Church of Stephen, although baptismal rights were acquired before the end of the Medieval period.
During the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, Saltash Corporation increasingly took control, designating the building “the Corporation Chapel” and appointing Chaplains. There were many disputes, one case even reaching the Court of Arches, Canterbury, in 1752. The Chapel had no burial ground; until 1864 the Corporation permitted members of prominent families to be interred .
In 1881, at the request of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners, and the Bishop of Truro, the Privy Council made an Order by which the chapel became a Parish Church. The boundary of the new parish followed the borough boundary of that time. The Order did not cover the questions of ownership and control of the building; discord continued until an agreement was reached between the Corporation and the Church Authorities in 1923.
The 1881 Order described the building as the Church of Nicholas and St Faith. St Faith was included because The Revd, Julian Moreton (last chaplain and first vicar) assumed that the chapel of St Faith at Saltash, licensed in 1435, was part of St Nicholas’ Chapel. In fact, the medieval St Faith’s Chapel was situated elsewhere in the town.