Beer Ferrers


"BERE FERRIS, or Bere Ferrers, commonly called Beer Town, is a small village on the western bank of the navigable river Tavy, about two miles above the confluence of the estuary of the Tamar, about 8 miles N. by W. of Plymouth, and 9½ miles S. of Tavistock. Its parish includes . . . many scattered farm houses, &c.; and contains 2142 inhabitants, and 5888 acres of fertile land, bounded on the east and west by the tidal waters of the Tamar and Tavy, and terminating at their point of confluence. Ii is noted for producing vast quantities of apples, cherries, strawberries, gooseberries, currants, &c., and the finest cider. . . . At Weir Quay are extensive smelting works, and in the neighbourhood are several lead and tin mines, yielding a large portion of silver, and employing above 1000 hands. . . . The Church (St. Andrew,) is an ancient structure, mostly in the decorated style, and has an embattled tower. . . . BEER-ALSTON, a small ancient town and disfranchised borough, in the parish, is pleasantly situated on a gentle eminence, overlooking the vales of the Tamar and Tavy, on the east and west, and distant about 3 miles N. of the parish church. . . . Here is an Independent Chapel, built in 1809; and also a small Wesleyan Chapel. . . ." [From White's Devonshire Directory (1850)]

A parish in Roborough Hundred, the Archdeaconry of Totnes, and the Diocese of Exeter.



Hobart, Henry. The death of Charles Stothard: an eye witness account, Wakefield, Box Tree Press (1981) [8]p: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library: p920/STO] [C. Stothard, Engraver, fell to his death in Beer Ferrers Church]



Brown, Mike. Guide Notes to Monuments in Devon Churches & Graveyards: Bere Ferrers, Sydenham Damerel. The Dartmoor Press. 16pp. [de Ferrers]

Whitmore, J.B. Devonshire Monumental Inscriptions, MS at Society of Genealogists (1951). [Extracts]


Church History

Bere Ferrers - from J. Stabb. Some Old Devon Churches (London: 1908-16).

St. Andrews Church, Bere Ferrers: a short history & guide, Bere Ferrers, Friends of St Andrews (1989) 16 pp. [Plymouth Library: 726.5BER]


Church Records

Parish Registers going back to 1538 are held in the Devon Record Office.

The Devon FHS publishes indexes covering (as of June 2004): Baptisms 1813-1840, Marriages 1754-1837, Burials 1813-1837 - for details see their Devon Parish List.

Other churches and chapels (with pre-1840 records):

  • Higher Chapel (Independent/Congregational), Bere Alston: Registers for 1813-37 (ZC) in PRO RG 4/514

Nothing entered into the IGI (as of Jan 1993).

Burials 1837 - 1850 and 1851-1861, provided by Devon Heritage.

Brown, Mike. Pre-1754 Marriage Index for Bere Ferrers.. Dartmoor Press, P.O. Box 132, Plymouth PL4 7YL (1999)

Brown, Mike. 1754-1812 Burial Indexes: Bere Ferrers. RT51, Dartmoor Press (2000).

Glanville, J. Gleanings from Parish Registers. Devon Family Historian 45 (1988) pp.23-24.

Granville, Roger & Mugford, W.E. (eds.) Bere Ferrers, 1605-1607. Abstracts of the Existing Transcripts of the Lost Parish-Registers of Devon, 1596-1644, and short notes on the extant pre-reformation registers of all the parishes in the county, from particulars furnished by the several incumbents thereof. Vol. 1 A-Bra. Exeter: W. Pollard (1908). [Full text]

The Deanery of Tamerton, CD, Devon Family History Society, Exeter (2003). [Contains indexes: Bere Ferrers - Baptisms 1813-1840, Marriages 1754-1837, Burials 1813-1837; Bickleigh - Baptisms 1813-1839, Marriages 1754-1837, Burials 1811-1837; Buckland Monachorum - Baptisms, 1813-1839 Marriages 1754-1837, Burials 1813-1837; Egg Buckland - Baptisms 1813-1839 Marriages, 1754-1837, Burials 1813-1837; Mary Tavy - Baptisms 1813-1840 Marriages, 1754-1837, Burials 1813-1837; Meavy - Baptisms 1813-1839 Marriages, 1754-1837, Burials 1813-1838; Peter Tavy - Baptisms 1813-1839, Marriages, 1754-1837, Burials 1790-1837; Sampford Spiney - Baptisms 1813-1839 Marriages, 1754-1837, Burials 1770-1837; Sheepstor - Baptisms 1813-1839 Marriages, 1754-1837, Burials 1813-1856; Tamerton Foliot - Baptisms 1813-1840 Marriages, 1754-1837, Burials 1813-1837; Walkhampton - Baptisms 1813-1840 Marriages, 1754-1837, Burials 1813-1837; Whitchurch - Baptisms 1813-1839 Marriages, 1754-1838, Burials 1813-1837]


Court Records

Register of Freeholders - Roborough (Part 1) c1816, Exeter, Devon Family History Society, (Booklet & PDF D132A). [Foreword]

Register of Freeholders - Roborough (Part 2) c1816, Exeter, Devon Family History Society, (Booklet & PDF D132B). [Foreword]


Description & Travel

Section on Beer Ferrers  from Samuel Lewis: A Topographical Dictionary of England (1831), provided by Mel Lockie.

Council, Bere Ferrers Parish. The parish guide, Bere Ferrers, The Council (1970?). [Plymouth Library: 967BE]

You can see pictures of Beer Ferrers which are provided by:



Transcription provided by Val Henderson of the entry (description and names) in Morris and Co's Commercial Directory and Gazetteer of Devonshire 1870.



The transcription of the section for this parish from the National Gazetteer (1868), provided by Colin Hinson.



This parish is one of the growing number of places for which the Devon Heritage website provides census or parish register transcriptions, articles, and/or illustrations, etc.

Benson, J. The Ferrers, Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries 21, 1940-41, pp. 57-62, 98-105, 157-62 & 195-9. [Raymond: Of Bere Ferrers, Devon, and Cornwall; medieval. ]

Boase, C.W. The Leys of Beerferris and old Plymouth. Western Antiquary 3, 1884 pp. 76 & 83-84.

Hooper, Doug. Gregory Family of Bere Alston, Devon Family Historian, vol. 171, (2019) pp.42-44.

Martyn, W.W. Notes on the family of Ley in Beer Ferrers. Western Antiquary 4, 1885, pp. 112-24. [Raymond: Pedigree, 17-19th c., of Ley alias Kempthorne of Kempthorne in Devon, and Tonacombe, Morwenstow, Cornwall, 15-19th c.]

N., J.G. Devonshire charters, connected with the family of Ferrers, Collectanea topographica et genealogica 8, 1843, pp. 33-5.

Norris, Dwane V. The Vogler/Fogler family history: Bere Ferrers, Devon, England to Chatham, Kent, Ontario, Canada, Jackson, Mich. : D.V. Norris, (c2002) viii, 111 leaves: ill., geneal. tables, maps, ports. [LDS 929.271 V868n]

Sherriff, Paul E. A Family Affair, Devon Family Historian, vol. 164, (2017) pp.16-18. [Concerning Gladys Elizabeth Furzeland (b. 1904, Beer Alston) who illegally married her uncle George Williams in East Stonehouse, and later married Lawrence Collins in Plymouth.]

X. The tombstones of Charles Arthur Stothard in Beer-Ferrers churchyard, Notes and Gleanings . . . Devon and Cornwall 1, 1988, pp. 110-111.



Beddow, Arthur J. History of Bere Ferrers parish. - 2nd ed. Tavistock: John B Huish (1986) 38p.

Hooper, Amanda. Bere Ferrers. [Plymouth] [Tavistock Place, Plymouth PL4 8AT]: [Plymouth College of Art and Design], 1983, 15 pp. ill., 1 map.

Woollcombe, Donetta. The story of Rumleigh, Bere Alston, The Author (1990) 63 pp. [Plymouth Library: 728.8RUM]

Williams, H. Fulford. Notes on the Parish of Bere Ferrers, Devon. Typescript (1953) 13 leaves. [Westcountry Studies Library]



Snell, Ruth. Inspeximus: Poetry from the manors of The Roborough Hundred. Silverwood Books (2014) 114 pp. [ISBN-13: 978-1781323021] ["Each poem is written with reference to one of the historical manors, and is presented with a short piece of information about the history of the relevant manor."]



View a map of the boundaries of this town/parish.

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SX459634 (Lat/Lon: 50.450149, -4.171944), Beer Ferrers which are provided by:


Military History

The Bere Feers Rail Accident, 24 Sep 1917 - listing of the New Zealand soldiers who died, provided by Christine Clement.

New Zealanders in Devon in 1917, (1989?) 3 pp. [Information on troops killed in a railway accident, 24 Sept 1917] [Torquay: D973.72 Pam]


Names, Personal

Name Index to Bere Ferrers with Bere Alston Monthly Magazine, Vol XII, No.133 (January 1927), by Sue Nash.

Bere Ferrers Apprentices Register - 1805-1817, Exeter, Devon Family History Society, (Booklet & PDF A027). [Foreword]



The Tamar Smelting Works and the Medieval Silver Mines (archived copy) at Bere Ferrers - history and map.


Politics & Government

Alexander, J.J. Bere Alston as a Parliamentary Borough. Trans. Devon Assoc. 41 (1909) pp.152-178.


Probate Records

Summary of the will of John Wrayford (1787) provided by John Moore.