Holy wells can be found all over Cornwall and are often associated with a local saint. Many started as natural springs that provided the local community with water. Some places in Cornwall were notorious for being short of water, and because of this the springs were considered holy or magical places. Many holy wells have small buildings built over them to protect the water source, while some were just left as they were or with ancient stone structures around them.
Today the custom of baptising dolls has been revived in Venton Bebibell and Figgy Dowdy’s Wells. Venton Bebibell is near the village of Morvah, and is the source of the Newlyn River that flows into the sea on the south coast. Figgy Dowdy’s Well is near the Cornish village of Lanner.