When West Castick first came into the ownership of the
Luskeys may be lost in the mists of time. We know that in 1703 Richard
Luskey bought Calstock Wood from John Jackman of St Cleer. We also know
that the Luskey family had been in the area for at least a century before
that. There are burials at St Torney’s and even older wills in the Cornwall
County Archive that show Luskey family members in the parish around 1600. Three of the burials have
Gravestones in St Torney’s Churchyard of (L-R)
William Luskey 1699 - 1776, John Luskey 1737 - 1816 and John Luskey
1780 - 1867
click on the images for a larger
An extensive Luskey family tree can be seen as a pdf here.
The Luskey family feature in the narrative “A Stranger In The Village”.
infamous local dispute regarding the use of Twelve Men’s Moor was
caused by the overgrazing of the common land on the moor by Richard Luskey
(1669-1776) of North Calstock. West Castick had previously been known as North Calstock but the name
changed slowly over the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
West Castick was in the possession of the Luskey family
until it was sold in 1890.
The family name came to an end in the parish with the death
of John Luskey in 1867. John’s widow moved away and his
half brother, Richard, was living at nearby Knighton in Lewannick. West
Castick remained in Luskey possession and was rented by Richard Luskey to
tenant farmers; this provided an income for the trust fund from which John
Luskey’s widow derived an income. It was during the period of the tenancy,
before the sale of West Castick in 1890, that Wheal
Luskey was operational. This
was a speculative mine on the banks of the River
Lynher due west of Trebartha Village at West Castick.
John Luskey was baptised in St Torney’s in 1780. He
married Joanna Venner of Luffincott in Devon and they lived for many years
at West Castick Farm. He also farmed at Westaway in Trewithy. Joanna died
in 1862 when she was 78 and John was 82; they had no children. John
remarried in Plymouth four years later. His bride was Jane Anne Hicks from
Lanteglos-by-Fowey who was just 22 years old and his nephew’s wife’s
cousin. Shortly before the marriage William Grylls Adams of Badharlick in
Egloskerry wrote to his sister Grace, saying “Mr Luskey of Castick who is
86 is to be married to Miss Hicks, a rather a gay young lady, just 22 years
of age". Whether this marriage was one of financial convenience for
the family or had a more romantic element has not been recounted but it was
newsworthy. John died in December 1867 and is buried alongside his first
wife in St Torney’s. Jane remarried in 1869 in Fowey and moved to London
and the Home Counties. She died in 1893 in Essex.
advertisement for the sale of timber just before John Luskey’s death can be