The Old Post Office

The Old Post Office

The Cornish village of Tintagel is famed for the romantic ruins of Tintagel Castle, but there is another historic site in the village that deserves attention. The Old Post Office is a traditional 14th-century house built for a yeoman farmer. Its most obvious feature is an undulating roof of slate tiles with a profile that looks rather like waves on the sea.

The Post Office was begun around 1380 as a longhouse, under a thatched roof. The longhouse design was quite simple; the long rectangle of the interior space was divided into three chambers, open to the roof, and joined by a through-passage.

One end was used for animals, while the central section had a hearth for warmth and cooking, with the smoke escaping directly through the thatched roof above. In the 16th century, the thatched roof was replaced by local slate, and a fireplace and chimney inserted in the central chamber. Bedrooms were added in both the north and south ends.

During the 19th century one room of the house was briefly used as a ‘letter receiving station’; the fore-runner of a village post office. Inside the house are displays of Victorian-era postal equipment, but most of the interior is given over to a recreation of family life over the centuries, with some pieces of 16th-century furniture, and a collection of hand-made samplers.

Location

Old Post Office

Tintagel

PL34 0DB