Transcribed from William White's History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Devonshire 1850, by Terry Partridge.

BUCKFASTLEIGH is a large manufacturing village, in two parts, called Higher and Lower Towns, pleasantly seated on the western side of the fertile valley of the river Dart, 2½ miles S. W. by S. of Ashburton. It has about 300 woolcombers, several corn mills, and four blanket and serge mills; but only two of the latter are at present occupied, and give employment to about 400 hands. Its parish had 1525 inhabitants in 1801, 2445 in 1831, and 2576 in 1841; and comprises 4379A. 3R. 35P. of cultivated land, and 1072½ acres of open moorland, on the eastern side of Dartmoor Forest, whence two rivulets flow to the Dart, irrigating the meadows in their courses, affording the combers ample means for washing their wool, and uniting their streams near the village, which had formerly a weekly market on Tuesdays, granted to the abbot in 1352; and still has two fairs for cattle and wool, on the third Thursday in June and the second Thursday in September. The parish rises in bold hills from the village, and has quarries of limestone and a sort of black marble. It comprises the hamlets of Buckfast, Scorraton and Runnaford Coombe; several neat mansions, commanding beautiful views; and a number of scattered farm-houses. Great quantities of cider are made here, and in one year, an orchard of one acre produced 4000 gallons. BUCKFAST ABBEY, in the Dart valley, about a mile north of Buckfastleigh, was founded by Ethelwerd, son of Wm. de Pomeroy, in 1137, for monks of the Cistercian order, and was richly endowed by him and subsequent benefactors. Its clear yearly income was valued at the dissolution at no less than £466. 11s. 2¾d. The site of the abbey was granted to Sir Thomas Dennis, and the manor of Buckfast was afterwards held by the Bakers and Doyleys, but was sold in parcels many years ago. The abbey ruins were extensive, but they were mostly taken down about 1806, except a large square tower, and a Norman arch, finely mantled with ivy. The Abbey House, built over the abbey vaults, is a modern mansion, in the castellated Tudor style. At the Grange, is the ancient tithe barn, 108 feet long; and some of the neighbouring houses appear to have been partly built with stones from the abbey ruins. The Earl of Macclesfield is lord of the manor of Brooke Mainbow, with Buckfastleigh and Button, and owns a great part of the parish. The rest is chiefly freehold, and belongs to J. J. and Charles Edwards, Esqrs., R. J. King, Esq., and the Savery, Barnes, Gower, Tucker, Furneaux, Michelmore, Hamlyn, Symons, and other families. About thirty acres are let in allotments to the poor. The manor of Kilbenland is dismembered, and that of Bosom Zeal extends into this parish. Henbury Castle, on the top of a commanding eminence, north of the village, is a circular entrenchmant of about six acres, encompassed by a deep ditch, now covered with coppice wood. Within the enclosure is a mound, surrounded by a smaller ditch, now almost concealed with trees. This earthwork is supposed to have been thrown up by the Danes. Bigaden House, the large mansion of R. J. King, Esq., has recently been much improved, and contains a fine collection of pictures and some ancient armour. Coulson Cottage is the neat residence of Charles Edwards, Esq., who possesses the faldstool which was used at the coronation of her Majesty, and was presented to him by the late Dean of Westminster. Brooke House, occupied by Mrs. Coates, was formerly a residence of the Earl of Macclesfield. The parish Church (Holy Trinity,) stands on an eminence, ascended by 144 steps, and is a lage antique structure, which, after being long in a shamefully neglected state, has been restored and beautified since June, 1844, at the cost of more than £1400. The tower contains six bells, and is surmounted by a handsome spire, the upper part of which is new, and replaces what had been gone several centuries. The interior of the church has now a handsome appearance, and comprises a nave, chancel, transepts, and two side chapels. A western gallery has been removed, and the old pews replaced by long low seats, to which doors have been added. There is now a fine open roof, instead of a plastered ceiling; and two beautiful memorial windows have been inserted, one by the vicar and his brother, in memory of their parents, the former vicar and his wife; and the other by Mr. Powning and his family, to the memory of his late father and brother. In the south transept is a mural tablet, in memory of the late Admiral Thomas White, of the Abbey House, who gave the rich furniture of the altar, which was destroyed by fire in 1849, but has been replaced by the liberality of some of the parishioners. Near the church stands a sepulchral building, over the vault of the Labell family, who were long seated at Brooke House. The vicarage, valued in K. B. at £19. 1s. 0½ d., and in 1831 at £182, is in the patronage and incumbency of the Rev. Matthew Lowndes, B.A., who has a large and respectable residence. The tithes were commuted in 1832, the vicarial for £198, and the rectorial for £232 per annum. Of the latter, £159 belongs to the Earl of Macclesfield, and £73 to the Rector of Ermington and J. J. Edwards, Esq. Here is a small Independent Chapel, built in 1798; and a large and handsome Weslyan Chapel, erected in 1835, at the cost of £1000. Under the latter is a large British School. Here is also a National School.The Parish Lands, &c., given at an early period by two sisters named Damarell, comprise a house and 13 acres, let for about £40 per annum, which is applied in the service of the church, except £2 for the poor. The Church House, formerly the parish workhouse, belongs to the same trust. The poor have the following yearly sums : - £2. 10s. out of Hamlin's Tenement, given in 1800, by Robt. Bradford; £2. 12s. left by Sir John Acland, and paid by the Corporation of Exeter; 20s. left by John Peter, in 1570, out of the tithes of Cornworthy; £1. 12s. left by Wm. Gould, out of Wallaford estate; 20s. out of the poor rates, as interest of £20, left by Margaret Pomeroy; 20s. out of Broom Parks, left by Andrew Tinckham; 24s. 6d., as interest of £24. 10s., lent to the parish officers; and 20s. out of land at Ashburton, left by George Knowling.


Angel Mr Thomas, Fairies' Hall
Barnes John, paper manfr. Kilberley
Barnes Mrs Sus
Berry John, serge mfr. (& Ashburton)
Braine Mrs Mary, Buckfast Abbey
Butchers John Carns, schoolmaster
Callard Mr John
Chenhall James, watch maker
Clase Rev John, (Independent)
Coates Mrs. Brooke House
Edwards Chas., Esq. Coulson Cottage
Frogley Henry, druggist
Furneaux Christopher, maltster, &c
Furneaux John, insurance agent, &c
Furneaux Thomas, tailor
Gidley Mr Wm.
Gover Mr Stephen, Black Rock
Hamlyn Brothers, tanners, woolstaplers, & serge manufacturers
Hamlyn Jph.
Irish John & Rt. gents. Hawsen Ctg
King Richd. John, Esq. Bigaden Hs
King Mrs Grace, and Miss Ann
Lowndes Rev Mattw., B.A. Vicarage
Mitchell John, tinner & ironmonger
Phillips Mrs Ann, Crappin Park
Savery Servington, Esq. Hayford
Symons John, cider merchant
Symons Thomas, woolstapler
Symons Mrs. Road View House
Trist R., Esq., Millbrook House
Tucker Mr Robert and Mrs
Vaughan Mrs. Buckfast Cottage
Warren John, Woolstapler & spinner

FARMERS. (* are Owners.)

Barter Elias, Scorraton
*Barter Ann, Runnaford Combe
Barter John, Warnacombe
Berry Wm. Abbey Grange
Bowden James
Bowden Jeffery
* Callard Hy. (miller,) West Mills
Chaffe Roger, Bigaden
Chaffe Robert, Broom Parks
Coates John, Brook Farm
Cruse Nicholas, Buckfast
Foster John, Colston
* Furneaux Samuel, Button
* Furneaux Saml. & John, Hapstead
Heath Thomas
Hendy Thomas
Hodge Mr
* Michelmore John, Northwood
* Petherbridge Richard, Scorraton
Petherbridge Wm.
Preston James
Preston Richard Bowden
Rouse Mr
Rowland Jacob, (miller,) Brook
Searell Wm. and Thomas, (millers)
Scott Mr
* Symons Thomas, Lovers Combe
Tooley Sus.
Waycott Wm.
Wyatt Josias


Commercial, Sus. Furneaux
Globe, George Cole
Golden Lion, John Churchward
Half Moon, John Hoarse
King's Arms, John Penny
Prince of Wales, Henry Choake
Royal Oak, Samuel Churchward
Sun, John Churchward
Town Arms, Henry Wilcock
Valiant Soldier, W. Foster
Waterman's Arms, Richd. Gibbins
White Hart, Thomas Petherbridge


Chaffe Robert
Gibbins Richd.
Rice Wm.
Voce John
Wing Wm.


Barter Richard
Boys Wm.
Easterbrook Jno.
Petherbridge Jas.
Prowse John


Churchward Jas.
Holditch Robt.
Tooley John
Trist John
Trist Thomas


Abbott John
Adams John
Callard Thos.
Murch Adam
Pope Wm.
Prowse John, (& cooper)
Willcocks John


Coulton Wm., Bully Clay
Furneaux Chas., Baker Pits


Arscott John
Border John
Churchward Jas.
Furneaux Saml.
Murch Thos.
Putt Thomas
Sincombe Peter
Weeks Jas. & Jno.
Wilcocks Henry


Codd James
Yeo Doctor Dl.


Easterbrook Jas.
Thomas Agnes


Bovey John
Butchers Jas. B. (and regr.)


Border Thos.
Hannaford John
Lee Edward
Petherick Richd., Buckfast
Tozer James
Tozer Wm.
Winter Wm.


Arscott Eliz.
Bastow Wm.
Bishop Thos. dpr
Butchers Richd.
Coombe Eliz.
Easterbrook Jno.
Ezekiel Lionel
Petherbridge Wm.
Shapter John
Treleaven Henry (and draper)
Warren Andw.
Warren Wm.
Wilcocks Eliz.
Wilcocks John


Evans James
Fisher Thomas


Hayman John
Hayman Richd
Howell George
Lee James
Warren Wm.


Arscott Wm.
Bastow Jno. Cole
Bastow Wm.
Bunclark John
Churchward Jno.
Codd Philip
Cole John
Furneaux John
Hamlyn Bros. (& manfrs)
Howard Wm.
Hunt John
Lock John
Penny Thomas, Saml., & Geo.
Petherbridge Ts.
Shapter John
Warren John
Weeks Andrew and John


At Wm. Foster's


to Ashburton daily, and J. & T. Wilcocks to Totnes four times a week.