Tomb Restoration 4

After the mammoth task of rebuilding the Daw tomb we moved on to the tombs of the Peter family.  The   tombs are next to the Luke vault in the North corner of the churchyard.  The first (railed) tomb contains the Reverend John Peter, Rector of Grade & Ruan Minor 12th November 1852, his wife Mary 3rd March 1867, daughter Sarah Hitchens 4th January 1832, daughter Mary 4th January 1832, daughter Martha Franklen 1st August 1885 and son Reverend Lewis Morgan Peter, Rector of Ruan Lanihorne & Vicar of Cornelly 30th March 1895.  The next grave contains John Luke Peter 20th November 1900 (second son of the Reverend John Peter) and his daughter Mary Wilmot Peter 8th December 1859.

The Peter family lived at Treviles.  The Reverend John Peter inherited Treviles in 1822 from his father Robert Peter, Rector of Sully in Glamorganshire, who had previously inherited it from his cousin Ann Luke.  The census shows us that only Mary and the children lived at Treviles while John lived at the vicarage at Grade.  On the death of John Peter in 1852, Treviles passed to his eldest son the Reverend Lewis Morgan and as he never married, on his death Treviles went to his brother John Luke Peter.  John Luke Peter may have lived at Treviles for a short while after his brothers’ death.


The first tomb is surrounded by iron railings.  It has granite boarders sitting on low stone walls.  From the outside boarders is a sloping stone leading to two flat rectangular headstones with inscriptions.  On top of these is a stone cross.  On the south side the top of a brick arch can be seen in the low wall and it is guessed that originally there were steps going down into the ground to give access to the tomb.

Peter Mary Wilmot

The second grave has granite boarders with granite slabs inset.  The granite end once had a stone cross on it which now lies broken on top of the granite slabs.  There are inscriptions on the granite end and on one of the boarders.

We started on the railed tomb as this was going to be the easier of the two.  The vegetation that had been growing on it had been given several doses of weed killer previously and the brambles and ivy on the top had died nicely.  The ivy on the sides was still persisting in places so another dose of weed killer was needed.  We hadn’t planned to paint the railings but with the Luke vault next door looking so good with its’ newly painted railings we decided to do the same.  The first job to be done was to rub them down with a wire brush to remove all the rust.  David had to do the inside as I couldn’t fit through the gap in the railings (perhaps it’s time for a diet).  Once this was finished we gave them a coat of black paint.  The two small trees that were growing in the wall and top were persistently putting up new growth but after a good dose of stump killer we hope this has now killed them off.  To give the weed killer time to work we moved to the restoration of the grave of Mary Wilmot Peter.

The first thing to do was to gently move the side granites slightly away so allowing us room to correct the height of the middle slabs and push them back together.  We then pushed the side granites back into their correct position.  The next thing to do was to bring the head end back up to the grave (it had previously fell down the slope and for safety reasons we had propped it upright where it had fallen).  This stone is extremely heavy and it took several moves to eventually get it back to the correct height and position.

The granite stones between the grave and the railed tomb had also been pushed and broken by trees, so we careful took these up, removed the stumps and relaid them flat.

With everything in place, we started to lime mortar the grave and then the granite path.


Now that this was complete we returned to the railed tomb.  The stump and root on the top was careful reduced so that mortar could be put in.  The gaps in the granite were all filled and then we started to mortar the sides.  The tree growing in the side had still not died, so we gave it another dose of stump killer and waited.  It is now showing no signs of life and we hope to finish mortaring the sides soon.