"HONITON, an ancient borough and market town, which has long been celebrated for the manufacture of beautiful lace, is picturesquely situated on rising ground, on the south-eastern side of the river Otter, 16 miles E.N.E. of Exeter, . . The town is well-built, and consists chiefly of one broad street, nearly a mile in length, mostly built since the destructive fires of 1747 and 1765, the former of which consumed three-parts of the town, and the latter 180 houses. . . . [It] is now well paved and lighted, and has many good inns and well stocked shops. . . . Its parish and borough are co-extensive, and comprise 3046A. 2R. 2P. of land, and upwards of 4000 inhabitants. . . . Honiton has a pottery of brown earthenware, a tannery, a brewery, an iron foundry, three corn mills, several maltkilns, and a branch of the National Provincial Bank of England. . . . Joseph Locke, Esq., M.P., one of the borough representatives, is now lord of the manor, but many other freeholders have estates in the parish, . . . St. Michael's, the old parish church, is inconveniently situated on a bold eminence, near Littletown farm. . . . It has a tower and five bells, and contains some ancient monuments, and one in memory of Dr. Marwood, physician to Queen Elizabeth, who died in 1617, aged 105 years. . . . " [From White's Devonshire Directory (1850)]

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


Archives & Libraries

Allhallows Museum has extensive collections of documents and photographs in its archives, acts as a Devon Record Office Service Point with PRs on microfiche for Awliscombe, Beer, Blackborough, Branscombe, Broadhembury, Buckerell, Clayhidon, Clyst Hydon, Clyst St Lawrence, Colaton Raleigh, Colyton, Combe Raleigh, Cotleigh, Dalwood, Dunkeswell, Farway, Feniton, Gittisham, Harpford, Honiton, Honiton Methodist Chapel, Kentisbeare, Kilmington, Luppitt, Membury, Monkton, Newton Poppleford, Northleigh, Offwell, Otterton, Ottery St Mary, Payhembury, Rockbeare, Seaton, Sheldon, Shute, Sidbury, Sidmouth, Southleigh, Stockland, Talaton, Upottery, Venn Ottery, Whimple, Widworthy and Yarcombe. A lookup and microfiche reader booking service is provided.



Brooking-Rowe, J (ed.) John Ashley, J.P. [Obituary] Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol. XXXIV, (1902), p. 34. [Transcript]

Coxhead, J.R.W. Alfred Leyman, artist, 1856-1933. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 33:5, (1975) pp.153-154; 34:5, (1980) pp.209-210; 34:8, (1981) pp.326-328.

Harpley, W.  Daniel Gould [Obituary]. Trans. Devon Assoc., vol. IV, Part I. (1870-1), pp. 40-41. [Transcript]

Harpley, W. Dr. Hodgson [Obituary]. Trans. Devon Assoc., 1881, Vol XIII, pp. 64-68. [Transcript]

Smith, Norah. Coffee at St Paul's (Honiton): A collection of true stories. Norah Smith (2010).

Wilkin, W.H. Five Honiton Worthies. Trans. Devonshire Ass. volume 70 (1938) pp.441-450.


Business & Commerce Records

Keen, Anne. A Good Policy. Family Tree Magazine 14,12 (Oct 1998) p.26.[Examples of Honiton fire insurance records.]



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

Terry Darrant has produced a Honiton Graveyard Mapping Database which contains over 5000 names and covers a period from roughly 1600 to 2019, and has provided this Name Index to it - contact him for details. He has now completed obtaining records for the whole old Honiton Civil Registration District - see Civil Registration List.

Skinner, A.J. St Michael's Church, Honiton: Memorial Inscriptions Destroyed in the Fire, 26 Mar 1911. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 9 (1917) p.253. [Transcript]


Church History

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

Adams, Maxwell. St. Michael's Church, Honiton. Devon & Cornwall Notes and Queries vol. VI, (January 1910 to October 1911), illus. pp.193-195. [Transcript]

Ashworth, Edward. Some account of the churches in the Deaneries of Plymtree and Honiton, Exeter Diocesan Architectural and Archaeological Society Trans. (2nd ser.), vol. 1, (1867) pp.6-15. [Index]

Chanter, Rev. J F. Eighth Report of the Committee on Church Plate - Deaneries of Ottery and Honiton. Report and Transactions of the Devonshire Association for the Advancement of Science, Literature and the Arts. Vol. 49, 3rd Series, Plymouth: W Brendan & Son (1917). Paper read at Barnstaple July 19th, illus. pp. 109-158. [Deaneries of Ottery and Honiton] [Index]

Cooke, D.H. The Independent Chapel, Honiton 1771-1971: the story of 200 years. (1971) 66p. [Westcountry Studies Library - 285/HON/COO]

Holman, H. Wilson. Honiton Church in 1755. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 11 (1920-21) pp.270-275. [Includes seating plan] [Index]

Hughes, Thomas Cann. Some notes on rectors of Honiton since the Commonwealth. Trans. Devon. Assoc. 30, (1898) pp.127-131. [Index]

Wilkin, W.H. The rectors of Honiton 1505-1907. Trans. Devonshire Ass. 69 (1937) pp403-410.


Church Records

Parish Registers going back to 1562 are held in the Devon Record Office.

Transcripts of the Parish Registers going back to 1562 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 Honiton Independent Chapel Burials 1813-1837 - for details see their Devon Parish List.

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

  • Baptist Chapel, High Street: Registers for 1829-37 (Z) in PRO RG 4/2027; 1879-1970 (C) at the DRO
  • Presbyterian/Independent/Congregational Chapel, High Street: Registers for 1697-1711, 1725-52, 1772-1837 (ZC), 1774-1837 (B) in PRO RG 4/2028, 4463, 4464, 4485, 441;

Entered into the IGI (as of Jan 1993), listed under "Honiton on Otter": Parish Church Christenings 1562-1837, and Marriages 1598-1837, New Meeting House (Independent) Christenings 1689-1710, 1725-1755, 1772-1780, 1821-1837.

Coxhead, J.R.W. An Inventory of St Michael's Church, Honiton, for the Year 1643. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 29, 8 (1964) pp.220-221. [Raymond: Transcript with names.]

Coxhead, J.R.W. Honiton Churchwardens' Disbursements for 1642, 1643 and 1646. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 29, 8 (1964) pp.224-227. [Raymond: Transcript of accounts.]

Coxhead, J.R.W. The Bells of St Michael's Church, Honiton, in the Seventeenth Century. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 29, 9 (1964) pp.257-259. [Raymond: Extracts from the churchwardens' accounts, 1611-1612 and 1641.]

Coxhead, J.R.W. Churchwardens of St Michael's Church, Honiton, 1570-1651. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 30, 1 (1965) pp.13-15.

The Deanery of Honiton: CD-ROM CD041, Exeter, Devon FHS (2013). [Axminster Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Axmouth Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1603-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Chardstock Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Colyton Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1538-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Combpyne Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1757-1836, Bur: 1796-1847; Cotleigh Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Dalwood Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Farway Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1800-1837; Gittisham Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1838, Bur: 1800-1837; Hawkchurch Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1838; Honiton Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Honiton Ind, Bur: 1774-1837; Kilmington Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Membury Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Monkton Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1814-1842; Musbury Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Northleigh Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1756-1836, Bur: 1813-1837; Offwell Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1800-1837; Seaton & Beer Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1839, Bur: 1813-1837; Shute Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Southleigh Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1756-1837, Bur: 1800-1837; Stockland Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1640-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Thorncombe Bapt: 1813-1837, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1841; Uplyme Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1838, Bur: 1813-1837; Wambrook Bapt: 1813-1904, Mar: 1754-1836; Widworthy Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1954, Bur: 1790-1837.]


Court Records

Clark, W. & Finnelly, W. Champernowne versus Brooke, In Reports of Cases Heard and Decided in the House of Lords on Appeals and Writs of Error, During the Sessions 1834-6. Vol. III, London: W T Clarke (1838), 763 pp. [Index]


Description & Travel

Honiton Town Council website.

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

Barber, Chips. Along the Otter, Exeter, Obelisk Publications (1996) 32p: ill, map. [ISBN 1899073426] [Westcountry Studies Library pB/OTT 3/1996/BAR]

Hallworth, Rodney. The valley of honey. Devon Life vol. 1 no. 12, (1966) pp.11-14; ill.

James, Peter. Honiton. Devon Life vol. 6 no. 48 (1970) pp.18-20; ill.

Mate's Illustrated Honiton official Guide (1903). [Devon FHS Library 942.35/HON]

You can see pictures of Honiton which are provided by:



Transcript of entry in White's Devonshire Directory of 1850.



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



The Online Parish Clerk scheme's representative for this parish is Margaret Lewis, who invites queries and lookup requests. (Resources: extensive database of 24,000 PRs plus.)

Christie, Ian R. The family circle of George Templar (1755-1819) M.P. for Honiton, 1790-1796, Trans. Devon. Assoc. 123, 1991, pp. 195-201.

Fortescue-Foulkes, R. The Marwoods of Honiton and Colyton, Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 32, 1971, pp. 48-51, 71-73, & 110-13.

S[kinner], A.J. Humphry family, Honiton. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 10, 1918, p. 56.

Skinner, A.J. Ezra Cleaveland, Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 10, 1918-19, p. 313. [Raymond: Cleaveland family extracts from Honiton parish register, 17-18th c.]

Skinner, A.J.P. Ozias Humphry, A.R.A., F.S.A. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 11:4, (1920) pp.116-120. [Corrections/additions to D.N.B.] [Index]

Skinner, A.J.P. Captain George Blagdon Westcott, R.N. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 11:5, (1921) pp.155-156. [Memorial of Westcott (died 1798) in Honiton church.] [Index]

Skinner, A.J. Shepherd of Watton Court, Honiton and Lawell. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 11, 1921, pp. 315-20. [Raymond: Includes 18th c. pedigree, and wills of James shepherd, 1733, and Sir James Shepherd, 1730.]

Skinner, A.J. John Duke's arms, Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 14, 1926-7, pp. 361-2. [Raymond: Includes pedigrees of Passemer and Gill, 17-18th c., and Gill family monumental inscriptions at Honiton]

Smith, Joan. Chipping Away at a Darke Brick Wall, Devon Family Historian, vol. 167, (2018) pp.23-26. [Concerning John Darke (1750-1835)]

Tomlinson, Margaret. Three Generations in the Honiton Lace Industry: A Family History. [s.l.]: [M.Tomlinson?] (1983) [6], 94p, plates: ill, map. [ISBN 0950857408] [Westcountry Studies Library - s746.2/HON/TOM] [Chick family]

Wilkin, W.H. Lewis of Honiton: a scholastic family. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 19, 1936-37, pp. 29-30. See also pp. 322-23.



Transcription, by Ann Andrews, of a 1793 article by John Feltham on the history of Honiton from the The Gentleman's Magazine Library.

Information about the history of Honiton Pottery.

Barber, Chips. Honiton, Past and Present. Pinhoe, Exeter: Obelisk Publications. [ISBN 1899073892].

Bradshaw, Susan. The Teaching of Honiton Lacemaking in the Early Twentieth Century. In Devon Documents (ed. T. Gray). Tiverton: Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries, Special Issue (1996) [ISBN 0925836203] pp.17-20.

Coxhead, J.R.W. Honiton and the vale of the Otter: a history. Exmouth: Raleigh Press (1949) 213p: ill. [Lookups]

Coxhead, J. R. W. Honiton: a history of the manor and the borough. Newton Abbot: Devon Books ; Town & Country Books [distributor],1984, 96 pp. ill. [ISBN: 0861147510 (pbk.)] [Lookups]

Edmunds, M. Honiton: an old Devon market town. Tiverton: Westcountry Books (1993) iv,76p: ill,maps. [ISBN 1898386013]

Farquharson, A. The History of Honiton. Exeter: A.Farquharson (1868) 81p. [Westcountry Studies Library - B/HON/0001/HIS] [Index]

Farquharson, A. The history of Honiton, Devon - compiled from authentic sources. Manuscript (1891) 181p. [Westcountry Studies Library - sfB/HON/0001/FAR] [Lookups]

Gosling, Gerald. The book of Honiton: of lace and pottery fame. Tiverton: Halsgrove (2005) 160p [ISBN 1841144088] [Index]

Harris, A.Wolsey. Honiton in by-gone days, glimpses of life and customs. [Exeter]: Pulman's Weekly (1952) 36p. [Westcountry Studies Library - B/HON/0001/HAR]

Horridge, G.K. Honiton, Devon: a case study. In The Salvation Army - Origins and Early Days: 1865 - 1900, Godalming, Ammonite, (1993). [ISBN: 186986607x] [Gives a detailed account of the riots that occurred in 1882 when the Salvation Army began recruiting in Honiton]

Lee, Constance. Handmade Lace and Net: Ebb and Flow. Trans Devon Assoc. Vol. XXXVI, (1904), pp. 135-143. [Index]

Nielsen, Shirley, (Ed.). Honiton Memories, The Author, 8 Angel Mews, Silver Street, Honiton, EX14 1SS (2005) 74 pp.

Orr, Joanna. Souvenir of Honiton, old and new. Honiton: The Author (1963) [16]p: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library - xB/HON/0001/ORR]

Palliser, Mrs. Bury. History of Lace (reprint of 4th ed.), New York, Dover Publications Inc. (1984). [ISBN 0 486 24742 2]

Smith, Joan. The Failure of the Banks in Honiton, Devon Family Historian, vol. 140, (2011) pp.4-6.

Terry, Alan Darrant. Honiton - a Glimpse Back, Colin R.Wright (2010) 382pp [ISBN 978-0952813941].

Treadwin (Mrs.) Devonshire Lace. Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol. 15, (1883) pp. 231-236. [Index]

Treadwin (Mrs.) Antique Point and Honiton Lace, Lightning Source UK Ltd. (2012) 110pp. [ISBN-10: 1248895959] [DFHS Library 746.4*]

Troup, Frances B. Honiton in 1530. Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol, 30, (1898) pp.117-126. [Index]

Watson, W.G.W. Mate's Illustrated Honiton: Its history past and present (2nd ed.).Bournemouth: W.Mate & Sons (1907) [60]p: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library - sB/HON/1907/WAT]

Yallop, H.J. Honiton in old picture postcards. Zaltbommel: European Library (1983) 1vol: chiefly ill. [ISBN 9028823190]

Yallop, H. J. The history of the Honiton lace industry. Exeter: University of Exeter,1992, xi, 352 pp. ill. (some col.), facsims., ports. [ISBN: 0859893790 (pbk)] [Lookups]

Yallop, John. Honiton and the Otter Valley in old photographs, Stroud, Alan Sutton (1992) 160p: chiefly ill. [ISBN 0750901683] [Westcountry Studies Library sB/HON/1850/YAL] [Index] [Lookups]

Yonge, Walter. Diary of Walter Yonge, esq., justice of the peace, and M. P. for Honiton, written at Colyton and Axminster, co. Devon, from 1604 to 1628. New York: Johnson Reprint Corp.,1968 1848, xxxii, 124 pp. (Roberts, George, ed.) [Lookups]

A short history of Honiton. Honiton & Allhallows Museum (1963) 10p. [Westcountry Studies Library - B/HON/0001/SHO]


Land & Property

Farm diaries of the Pearcey Family of Weston Barton, Honiton are held at the Surrey History Centre, Woking.

Elliot, John. Homes and gardens - Widworthy Barton, Honiton. Devon Life vol. 10 no. 79 (1973) pp.20-22; ill.

Drake, Mary. The Fairmile inn. Devon Life vol. 1 no. 7, (1965) pp.6; ill.



Map of the area from OldeMaps (circa 1950).

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

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SY166999 (Lat/Lon: 50.792644, -3.184632), Honiton which are provided by:


Names, Personal

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

Names from an 1822-23 edition of Pigot's Directory.



The Midweek Herald - online edition and archive.



Andrews, Mrs. M.E. Bootmakers, Cordwainers and Shoemakers in Honiton between 1813-1839, Devon Family Historian, vol. 106, (2003) pp.34-35. [Listing derived from baptismal records]

Coxhead, J.R.W. The Romance of the Wool, Lace and Pottery Trades in Honiton. (8th ed.) Honiton: P.H.Thrower (1968) 40p: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library - p677.31/HON/COX] [Lookups]

Inder, P.M. History of Honiton Lace, 3rd. ed. (1983). [ISBN 086114144X] [Devon FHS Library p746.222]

Moody, A. Penderel. Devon Pillow Lace: Its History and How to Make It, London, Paris, New York, Toronto & Melbourne, Cassell & Company Limited (1908).

Whittaker, A.L. Honiton lace. Devon Life vol. 4 no. 29, (1968) pp.17-20; ill.


Politics & Government

Wilkin, W.H. Notes on the Members for Honiton, 1640-1868. Trans. Devon Assoc. 66 (1934) pp.253-278.


Poor Houses, Poor Law

Honiton Union List of Paupers - Lady Day 1882, Exeter, Devon Family History Society, (Booklet & PDF D137). [Foreword]

Honiton Union List of Paupers - Lady Day 1901, Exeter, Devon Family History Society, (Booklet & PDF D138). [Foreword]

Honiton Union List of Paupers - Michaelmas 1901, Exeter, Devon Family History Society, (Booklet & PDF D139). [Foreword]


Probate Records

Will of Philip Bagwell (1845), transcribed by Jenny Bird.

Will of Margaret Ewings (1803), transcribed by Ros Dunning.

Wills of Mary Buller (1775), William Buller (1763) and James Blake (1833), transcribed by Elizabeth Kipp.

Brushfield, T.N. Inventory of the Goods of Henry Hampshire of Honiton, 1690. Devon Notes and Queries 2 (1902-03) pp.242-246, and 9 (1916-17) pp.[5]-2. [Index to part 1]

Tapley-Soper, H. Recovery of Will of Smyth Family. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 11 (1920-21) pp.212-214. [Raymond: Will of James Smyth of Honiton, 1677.]



Coxhead, J.R.W. Allhallows School, Honiton: Register and record, 1902-1932. (1932) [Westcountry Studies Library]

Coxhead, J.R.W. Schoolmasters of Allhallows School in the Seventeenth Century. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 28 (1959-61) pp.263-265, 29 (1962-64) p.285.

Coxhead, J.R.W. William Woodgate's Academy, Honiton. Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 30 (1965-67) pp.196-199. [Raymond: Abstracts from 1841 and 1851 census returns, giving names of staff and pupils.]

Coxhead, J.R.W. The History of Allhallows School, 1524-1958. (2nd. ed.) Rousdon: Old Honitonians Club (1972) [Exeter University Library, Plymouth Library, Torquay Library] [Raymond: Includes much information on headmasters, 1604-965, and on schoolmasters of Honiton Grammar School, 1604-1677.]

Napier, G.S. Allhallows School, Rousdon: Register and Record. 1852-1952. Honiton: A. Dimond and Co. (Honiton) (1953).


Voting Registers

Barnes. Manor and Borough of Honiton. Roberts, Printer, High Street, Honiton (1829) [Honiton Museum - includes tenants lists for 1829 and 1811] [Lookups]

Voters List. Spurway Printer, Binder, etc. Honiton (1802) [Honiton Museum - includes occupations] [Lookups]

Borough of Honiton list of voters, 1839. (1839) [Westcountry Studies Library]