St George the Martyr

Rood – Newspaper article (West Briton, 1955a, b); 1955

In order to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the the Church of St George the Martyr in 1955, the parishioners raised a total of £560 to furnish the Requium Chapel in the north transept and to provide a hanging rood under the central arch. Newspaper reports before and after the celebrations name ‘the studio of Miss V. Pinwill, the well-known Plymouth Sculptress’ as the source for the rood. It is said to be carved from a single piece of chestnut (history-of-st-george). It was dedicated on 27 October 1955 by the Bishop of Truro. The rood bears a striking similarity to one for Mithian (1924 designed by R.F. Wheatly) and another for the Diocesan Training College in Truro (1920 designed by E.H. Sedding). It seems likely that the Sedding design was reused at Mithian and at St George.

The person responsible for overseeing the centenary celebrations was the Revd George Hewson (Vicar 1945-64) and it was he who commissioned the rood from Violet Pinwill. During preparations, he made a visit to her studio, taking along his young son Paul and making a day of it in Plymouth with a walk around the Hoe. Paul remembers Violet Pinwill, who was into her seventies by then, as well as the war-torn city centre, yet to be rebuilt (Paul Hewson, pers. comm. May 2017).


West Briton (1955a) Truro Centenary. Three Bishops to Visit St. George’s. 10 October p. 2.

West Briton (1955b) Centenary Celebrations at St. George’s Church. 31 October p. 2.