"DAWLISH, or Daulish, is a large and handsome village, and bathing place, delightfully situated near a fine bay of the English Channel, between Exmouth and Teignmouth . . . and at the beginning of the present century was only a small fishing village. It lies in a picturesque valley opening to the sea, and a rivulet, which runs through its principal street, is crossed in several places by small bridges of stone or iron. . . . The Parish of Dawlish had only 1424 inhabitants in 1801, but in 1841 they had increased to 3132. It contains about 5017 acres of land, rising boldly from the valley and the beach, and including the small hamlets of Cockwood, Middlewood, Westwood, Holcombe, East Town, Shattern, and Lithwell. . . . Large quantities of mackerel, herring, and other fish are taken on the coast, and the neighbourhood is celebrated for orchards and excellent cider. The Parish Church (St. Gregory,) is at the upper end of the village, three quarters of a mile from the beach, and was all rebuilt, except the tower, in 1824-'5, at the cost of about £6000. it is a large and handsome structure in the early English style, and will seat more than 1500 hearers." [From White's Devonshire Directory (1850)]

A parish in Exminster Hundred, under the Peculiar jurisdiction of the Dean and Chapter of of Exeter. Starcross is a modern parish formed from parts of Dawlish and Kenton.



Colley, Reg. Looking back or my memoirs. Starcross: A.& P.Jarvis (1980) 48p. [Westcountry Studies Library - p920/COL]

Gibbings, Les. Fatal Accident on the Victorian South Devon Railway, Devon Family Historian, no. 187, (2023) p.9. [Edward Searle (74), killed 1877].

Harpley, W. (Ed.) Charles Eales [Obituary]. Trans. Devon Assoc., 1882, Vol XIV, p. 118. [Transcript]

Merrivale, Charles. Herman Merrivale CB. Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol. 16 (1884) pp. 570-580. [Index]

Captain George Peacock, senior founder of Peacock & Buchan Ltd, Southampton, Peacock & Buchan [1957?] 9p: ill. [Peacock retired to Starcross in 1859, builder of Swan of the Exe] [Westcountry Studies Library p920/PEA]



MIs for this parish are included in the Incledon index - see under Cemeteries on the main Devon page.

Cresswell, B.F. Notes on the Churches of the Deanery of Kenn, Devon, (1912). [Extracts]

Dawlish, Saint Gregory the Great. Churchyard listing (1995) 30p. [Westcountry Studies Library - sx929.5/DAW/DAW]

Cofton St. Mary: monumental inscriptions (Notes compiled for the Devon Family History Society), Typescript (1990) 27 pp. [Westcountry Studies Library sx929.5/COF/COF]


Church History

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

Bradshaw, Muriel. The Church in This Place, The Author (2007). [ISBN 0-952-56730-X] [History of St Gregory's Church, Dawlish]

Colley, Reg. Starcross church, R. Colley (1985). [Westcountry Studies Library]

Friend, D.R. Notes on the Local Growth of Nonconformity, and a Short History of Dawlish Congregational Church. Dawlish: W.J.Holman (1953) 16p. [Westcountry Studies Library - 285.8/DAW/NOT]

Jordan, Flora. Dawlish Parish Church. Trans. Devon Assoc. 45 (1913) pp.368-376. [Index]

A short history of Cofton St. Mary, Cofton, The Church (1961) 4 pp. [Westcountry Studies Library p726.5/COF/SHO]


Church Records

Parish Registers going back to 1627 are held in the Devon Record Office.

Transcripts of the Starcross Registers going back to 1828 are held in a special collection in the Westcountry Studies Library.

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

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

  • St Paul, Starcross: Registers for 1828-1992 (C), 1828-1991 (M), 1828-1916 (B) at DRO
  • Independent/Congregational Chapel, The Strand: Registers for 1814-37 (C) in PRO RG 4/2277
  • Wesleyan Chapel: Registers for c1813-37 - see Teignmouth (PRO RG 4/1220); 1863-1957 (C) at DRO

Entered into the IGI (as of Jan 1993): Independent Chapel Christenings 1814-1837.

Entered into the IGI under Starcross (as of Jan 1993): Christenings 1828-1843.

Godfrey, E. Notes on Dawlish Parish and its Churchwardens Accounts. Trans. Devon Assoc. 101 (1969) pp.17-43. [Raymond: Includes many extracts.]

An index of baptisms, marriages and burials in the parishes of Alphington, Ashcombe, Bishopsteignton, Chudleigh, Combeinteignhead, Dawlish, Dunchideock, East Ogwell, East Teignmouth, Exminster, Haccombe, Ide, Kenn, Kenton, Mamhead, Powderham, Shaldon, Shillingford St. George, Starcross, Stokeinteignhead, St. Thomas the Apostle (by Exeter), Trusham, West Ogwell and West Teignmouth. Includes Chudleigh United Reformed Church and East Teignmouth Zion Independent Chapel Burials. With photographs of the churches and extracts from White's Directory (1850) and Kelly's Directory of Devonshire (1902), CD-ROM, Exeter, Devon FHS (2015). [Alphington Bapt: 1813-1840 Mar: 1754-1837 Bur: 1812-1837; Ashcombe Bapt: 1813-1841 Mar: 1754-1836 Bur: 1783-1837; Bishopsteignton Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1754-1837 Bur: 1813-1837; Chudleigh Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1754-1837 Bur: 1813-1837; Chudleigh United Reformed Chapel Bur: 1834-1836; Combeinteignhead Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1754-1837 Bur: 1800-1837; Dawlish Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1754-1837 Bur: 1813-1837; Dunchideock Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1756-1836 Bur: 1813-1851; East Ogwell Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1755-1837 Bur: 1813-1837; East Teignmouth Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1755-1837 Bur: 1813-1837; East Teignmouth Zion Independent Chapel Bur: 1809-1836; Exminster Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1754-1836 Bur: 1813-1837; Haccombe Bapt: 1821-1842 Mar: 1773-1801 Bur: 1829-1839; Ide Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1754-1837 Bur: 1813-1837; Kenn Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1754-1836 Bur: 1813-1837; Kenton Bapt: 1813-1844 Mar: 1754-1837 Bur: 1813-1837; Mamhead Bapt: 1813-1840 Mar: 1754-1837 Bur: 1813-1837; Powderham Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1754-1835 Bur: 1785-1837; Shaldon Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1754-1837 Bur: 1813-1837; Shillingford St. George Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1765-1837 Bur: 1680-1842; Starcross Bapt: 1815-1840 Mar: 1828-1837 Bur: 1828-1837; Stokeinteignhead Bapt: 1813-1840 Mar: 1754-1836 Bur: 1800-1837; St.Thomas the Apostle (by Exeter) Bapt: 1813-1840 Mar: 1754-1837 Bur: 1813-1837; Trusham Bapt: 1813-1840 Mar: 1743-1837 Bur: 1750-1837; West Ogwell Bapt: 1813-1839 Mar: 1755-1843 Bur: 1813-1839; West Teignmouth Bapt: 1813-1840 Mar: 1754-1837 Bur: 1813-1837.]


Description & Travel

Dawlish Town Council website - extensive general and historical information.

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

Conservation Area Appraisals for Dawlish and Cockwood - interesting accounts of the areas, with numerous photographs and maps.

Carrington, N.T. The Teignmouth, Dawlish and Torquay guide. Teignmouth: E.Croydon (1830) 230p: folded map. [Westcountry Studies Library - DEV/1829/CAR]

George, Eric A. Dawlish is so delightful. Devon Life vol. 8 no. 62 (1971) pp.29-31; ill.

Haseler, H. and Cornish, H. Scenery on the Southern Coast of Devonshire: Comprising Picturesque Views at or near the Fashionable Watering Places, Sidmouth, Budleigh Salterton, Exmouth, Dawlish, Teignmouth, and Torquay, Sidmouth, John Wallis (1819) 30p., 30 plates.

Noble, W.B. A Guide to the Watering Places on the Coast, between the Exe and the Dart; Including Teignmouth, Dawlish and Torquay, Teignmouth, E. Croydon (1821) 203 pp.

Teignbridge from Dartmoor to the sea at Teignmouth and Dawlish, South Devon, Newton Abbot, Teignbridge (1979) [2], 108p: ill, map. [Westcountry Studies Library sB/TEI 4/1979/TEI]

Nelson's guide to Torquay and Exeter, including Dawlish, Teignmouth, Exmouth and Sidmouth, London, Thomas Nelson & Sons (1908) 64p, 3pls: ill, map. [Westcountry Studies Library B/TOR 7/1908/NEL]

You can see pictures of Dawlish which are provided by:



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



Amery, P.F.S. The Legend of Lithwell Chapel. In: Thirteenth Report of the Committee on Devonshire Folk-Lore. Trans. Devon Assoc., vol. XXVII, (1895), pp. 62-63. [Transcript]



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.

Gibbings, Les. Not Always Plain Sailing: Finding a Grave, Devon Family Historian, no. 180, (2021) pp.19-21. The search for the grave of James barrett, of Starcross (d. 1804).

Gibbings, Les. A Civil Registration Certificate Can Have Unknown Family Gold, Devon Family Historian, vol. 179, (2021) pp.10-11 [Susanna Proctor, d. 1895].

Lavis, Roger. An Extraordinary Coincidence in the Lavis Family, Devon Family Historian, vol. 144, (2012) pp.7-8.

Morgan, H.G. What's in a name? Devon Historian 12, 1976, pp. 22-25. [18th c.]

Newcombe, M.O.L. Newcombes of Chard, Drewsteignton, Exeter and Starcross, ed. Jud Burgoyne-Newcombe. [Newport, Gwent]: the author, 1996. [Raymond: Medieval-19th c.; includes pedigrees.]

Skinner, A.J.P. Periam Pole. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 7:6, (1913) pp.206-208. [See vol.7 appendix: Notes on churches, deanery of Kenn, p.57.] [Pole Family]

Whiteaway, P.R. The history of Rixdale Farm, Dawlish and the Tripe family. Typescript (1993) 47p. [Westcountry Studies Library - sx728.67/BID/WHI]



Barber, Chips. The Story of Dawlish Warren, Obelisk Publications (2001) 32 pp. [Index]

Carter, F.J. Notes on old Dawlish 1588-1850. Dawlish: Dawlish Museum (1976) 40p.

Carter, W.H. Some Account of the Church and Parish of Cofton St Mary. (1939) [Westcountry Studies Library]

Collier, R.E. Notes and illustrations relating to Dawlish. Typescript [1960?] 83 leaves, plates: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library - xB/DAW/0001/COL]

Collier, R.E. Events in Dawlish during the 19th Century, collected during 1947-1960. (Typescript) (1961) 78p. [Westcountry Studies Library - sB/DAW/1800/COL]

Cornelius, R. Dawlish: Its ancient history; St Agatha's Lidwell. (1954) 40p,4p of plates [Westcountry Studies Library - 726.5/DAW/COR]

Cornelius, W.M. Dawlish Historical and Topographical. Dawlish: W.M.Cornelius (1875) 105p. [Westcountry Studies Library - B/DAW/1880/COR] [Index]

Cresswell, B.F. Dawlish, and the estuary of the Exe; ... with notes on Chudleigh. London: Homeland Association (1902) 88p.

Davidson, James Bridge. On the Early History of Dawlish. Trans. Devon Assoc., 1881, Vol XIII, illus., pp. 106-130. [Index]

Force, David. Dawlish Through the Ages. Printed by Swiftprint (2018) 215p.[ISBN: 978-1-788-08078-1] [DFHS Tree House Library]

Gibbings, Les. Starcross Summer Regattas - Feast, Fun and Frolics - Part 1, Devon Family Historian, no. 185, (2023) pp.39-43.

Gibbings, Les. Starcross Summer Regattas, Devon Family Historian, no. 186, (2023) pp.40-44.

Gosling, Gerald. Dawlish & Teignmouth From Old Photographs, Amberley Publishing (2011) 160 pp. [ISBN-10: 144560034X]

Griffiths, Grace. The book of Dawlish: a history of Dawlish and Dawlish Warren with notes on the surrounding villages of Ashcombe, Cofton, Kenton, Mamhead, Powderham, and Starcross. Buckingham, England: Barracuda Book (1984) 148 pp. ill. ISBN: 0860232018.

Omerod, G. Wareing. The Trias at Dawlish. Trans. Devon Assoc., vol. XIII, (1881), pp. 159-162. [Index]

Pascoe, W.H. Exmouth to Starcross: an ancient ferry: a story of almost 1200 years, Exeter, Obelisk Publications (1996) 24p: ill, maps. [ISBN 1899073337] [Westcountry Studies Library s386.6/EXE/PAS]

Pearce, Frank. The Book of Dawlish (Halsgrove Community History Series), Halsgrove House, Lower Moor Way, Tiverton, Devon, EX16 6SS, UK, Halsgrove Publishing (2001) 160 pp. [ISBN 1840041100] [Index]

Rose-Troup, Frances. Holcombe by Dawlish. Trans. Devon. Assoc. 62, (1930) pp.261-267.

[Skilton, Sally]. Dawlish & Devon Violets, Devon Family Historian, vol. 162, (2017) pp.20-21.

Thompson, A.R. How Dawlish Lost its Independence: Local administration in the 18th and 19th centuries. (1998). [DFHS Library 942.35/DAW]

Thompson, A.R., (Ed.). Aspects of Dawlish History, (1999). [DFHS Library P942.35/DA]

Thompson, A.R. More Aspects of Dawlish History, Dawlish Local History Group (2000). [DFHS Library - p942.35/DAW]

Thompson, A.R. Dawlish Folk, Dawlish Local History Group (2000). [DFHS Library - p942.35/DAW]Whiteway, Patricia The Mills of Dawlish, Dawlish Local History Group (2000). [DFHS Library - p942.35/DAW]

Starcross Club, 1772-1913. Exeter: W.J. Southwood & Co. (1913) [Westcountry Studies Library - s366/STA/STA]

Inns and Taverns of Old Dawlish, Dawlish Local History Group (1997). [DFHS Library - p942.35/DAW]



Morgan, H.G. The warren in the manor of Dawlish. Devon Historian 13, (1976) pp.21-25. [Relationship of Dawlish Warren to the medieval manor of Dawlish.]



OS 1:500 1888 Town Plan of Dawlish, provided by the National Library of Scotland. (The plan consists of 11 sheets - to examine an individual sheet select the appropriate extent in the little grid covering Dawlish and click on "Zoom to selected map extent.)"

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

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SX960768 (Lat/Lon: 50.581647, -3.470301), Dawlish which are provided by:


Military History

1914-1919 War Memorial and Second World War Memorial, at St Mary's Church, Cofton, transcribed by John Williams.

The Dawlish World War One Project - Commemorating the Centenary of the First World War - "a partnership project between groups in the Dawlish, Holcombe and Cofton area who are commemorating the personnel lost over the period of the First World War . .  The aim is to build a record of the impact of the First World War on families, the life of the town and, of course, the story of those who went to war, and of the many who did not return." Contains biographies of many of the soldiers named on the memorials.

Thompson, A.R. On Guard: A short history of the militia, volunteers, yeomanry and home guard of Dawlish and District, Dawlish Local History Group (2002). [DFHS Library - p355.37/DAW

Vickery, Robert. Dawlish War Memorials, Devon Family Historian, vol. 170, (2019) p.19.

Vickery, Robert. Dawlish Remembers The First World War Part 1: 1914-1915.  Independently published (9 Feb. 2021) 119pp. [ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 979-8707103377]

Vickery, Robert. Dawlish Remembers The First World War Part Two 1916-1917. Independently published (24 Feb. 2021) 196pp. [ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 979-8713064648]

Vickery, Robert. Dawlish Remembers the First World War, Part Three 1918-1921. Independently published (25 Jun. 2021) 218pp. [ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 979-8526791847]


Names, Personal

Dawlish contributors to a 1678 brief for the rebuilding of St Paul's Cathedral.



Dawlish Apprentices Register - 1833-1834, Exeter, Devon Family History Society, (Booklet & PDF A138). [Foreword]



Dawlish Local History Group's website (archived copy)provide details of the group's programe of meetings, publications, and copies of their newsletter.

Dawlish Freemasons - histories of The Vale of Haldon Lodge (archived copy) and Salem Lodge (archived copy).