"KINGSBRIDGE is a small but busy and improving market town, pleasantly situated on rising ground, at the head of the estuary which runs up from the English Channel, between Salcombe and East Portlemouth, about six miles below, and has several creeks projecting from either side. It is distant about 20 miles E.S.E. of Plymouth, 34 miles S.S.W. of Exeter, 12 miles from Totnes and Ivybridge Railway Stations, and 205 miles W.S.W. from London. It is in the two PARISHES of KINGSBRIDGE and DODBROOKE, the former of which has only 32 acres, and had 1654 souls in 1841; . . . The manor of Kingsbridge was held by Buckfast Abbey, as part of Churchstow and was granted by Philip and Mary to John and Barnard Drake, who sold it to Sir John Peter. In 1793, it was sold by Lord Petre to the Scobells, and it now belongs to John Scobell, Esq. . . . KINGSBRIDGE CHURCH (St. Edmund,) is a large and ancient cruciform structure, with an embattled tower, containing six bells, and crowned by a spire. . . . the Rev. Richard Luney, M.A., is the present vicar, and also one of the prebendaries of Exeter. He has erected here a handsome Vicarage House; and under his judicious superintendence, the church was repewed and renovated in 1845, at the cost of more than £500. . . . " [From White's Devonshire Directory (1850)]

A parish in Stanborough Hundred, in the Archdeaconry of Totnes and Diocese of Exeter. Regarded as part of the South Hams area.


Archives & Libraries

Extensive information about Kingsbridge's Cookworthy Museum of Rural Life, which incorporates a Local Heritage Resource Centre - whose collections include many photographs, PRs and local newspapers on microfiche, local history books and trade directories.



Adams, Maxwell (Ed.) Jasper John Amery. [Obituary] Trans. Devon. Assoc., vol. 45, (1913). pp. 40-41. [Transcript]

Adams, Maxwell (Ed.) William Davies. [Obituary] Trans. Devon. Assoc., vol. 47, (1915), pp. 44-45. [Transcript]

Adams, Maxwell (Ed.) Peter Gillard Bond. [Obituary] Trans. Devon. Assoc., vol. 52, (1920), p. 36. [Transcript]

Bennett, John. Where is Winnie, Who is She?, Devon Family Historian, vol. 145, (2013) pp.23-24. [Winifred Louisa Bennett, d. Kingsbridge 1900.]

Born, Anne. This extraordinary man: John Wolcot, Peter Pindar (1738-1819). Trans. Devon. Assoc. 122, (1990) pp.83-102.[Peter Pindar (John Wolcot), writer, 1738-1819]

Brooking-Rowe, J. (ed.) William Roope Ilbert, D.L., J.P. [Obituary] Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol. XXXIV, (1902), p. 38. [Transcript]

Fox, H. The Story of William Cookworthy. (1972) [Plymouth Library]

Fox, Hubert C. The story of William Cookworthy : Maker of porcelain and man of peace (2nd ed.), Southampton, Pearson & Lloyd (1995) 30 pp. : ill., geneal. table, ports. [ISBN 1899550186]

Girtin, Tom. Doctor with two aunts: a biography of Peter Pindar. London: Hutchinson (1959) 272p, plates: ill.

Harpley, W. Robert Foale [Obituary]. Trans. Devon. Assoc., 1878, Vol X, p. 54-55. [Transcript]

Harpley, W. Joseph Pullibank. [Obituary] Trans. Devon. Assoc., 1878, Vol X, p. 58. [Transcript]

Harpley, W. P. O. Hingston. [Obituary]. Trans. Devon. Assoc., 1881, Vol XIII, p. 64. [Transcript]

Harpley, W. Robert Hurrell. [Obituary]. Trans. Devon. Assoc., 1884, Vol XVI, pp. 65-66. [Transcript]

Harpley, W. E. Arthur. [Obituary]. Trans. Devon. Assoc., 1884, Vol XVI, p. 52. [Transcript]

Harpley, W. Francis Drake Pearce. [Obituary]. Trans. Devon. Assoc., 1891, Vol XXIII, p. 110. [Transcript]

Hawker, Rev. Treasurer. Sketch of Wolcot (Peter Pindar). Trans. Devon. Assoc., 1877, Vol IX, pp.331-335. [Transcript]

Paine, Crispin. A South Devon Carpenter in Victorian London: The Diary of Charles Cleverly Paine , Meskel Press (2014) 98 pp. [ISBN-13: 978-0992877705]

Pengelly, W. Cookworthy, William and the Divining Rod. In Miscellaneous Devonshire Gleanings, Trans. Devon Assoc., 1881, Vol XIII., pp. 135-137. [Transcript]

Rowe, J.Brooking.  John Cranch. Devon Notes & Queries, vol. I, (January 1900 to January 1901), pp. 193-4. [Transcript]

Wilks, Gloria. Journal of Louisa Timewell 1852, Devon Family Historian, vol. 73, (1995) pp.2-9. [née Lidstone - journal of sea voyage to Australia]

Worth, R N. William Cookworthy and the Plymouth China Factory. Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol. 8, (1876) pp. 480-496. [Index]



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

A transcription of the Memorial Inscriptions for the Church of St Edmunds, and the Embankment Road Cemetry is held in the Society of Genealogist's Library, in Vol. 5 of Devon Memorial inscriptions (DE/M18), together with one of Memorial Inscriptions for the Monuments behind the Catholic Church - Old Quaker Ground? - Methodist Church, Baptist Church, Church Lane, and the Baptist Church, Phoenix Place, in Vol. 8 of Devon Memorial inscriptions (DE/M23).

Collins, Lyn. Monumental inscriptions Kingsbridge civil cemetery. Typescript (1987) 61p. [Westcountry Studies Library]

Collins, Lyn. St. Edmunds church and church yard monuments, Kingsbridge, South Hams District, Devon. The Author(1987) 56p: ill, plan. [Plymouth Library - 929.5/965K]

Collins, Lyn. List of monuments: St Thomas of Canterbury Church, Church St, Dodbrooke, Kingsbridge, Devon. Typescript (1988) 80, 26p. [Westcountry Studies Library]

Collins, Lyn. Baptist burial ground, Venn, Auton Gifford and the Baptist chapel, Kingsbridge: monumental inscriptions, Kingsbridge, [Lyn Collins] (1989) 6 pp. [Westcountry Studies Library: px929.5/AVE/BAP]

Collins, Lyn. Kingsbridge: monumental inscriptions from the Quaker burial ground and the Methodist church forecourt. Kingsbridge: [Lyn Collins] (1989) [Westcountry Studies Library - px929.5/KIN/KIN]

Collins, Lyn. Walking in the Churchyards. Kingsbridge History Society Recorder 1 (1989) pp.7-11.

Collins, Lyn. Deaths at sea: Malborough monumental inscriptions: church near Kingsbridge, South Devon. Kingsbridge: Lyn Collins [1990?] 4p. [Westcountry Studies Library]

Square, J. Harris. Epitaphs from Churches, Churchyards and Burial Places in the Following Parishes: Kingsbridge, South Milton, East Allington, Dodbrooke, Malborough, Blackawton, West Alvington, Sherford, Charleton, Thurlestone, Churchstow, East Portlemouth. Devonshire Association Trans. 29 (1897) pp.182-215. [Index]



Name index to the 1841 census, and to the 1841 Kingsbridge Union workhouse (archived copy) census, from the Parishes of the South Hams website.


Church History

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

Davies, William. Buckfast Abbey and its relation to Kingsbridge. Trans. Devon. Assoc. 45, (1913) pp.143-151. [Index]


Church Records

Parish Registers going back to 1612 are held in the Devon Record Office.

The Devon FHS publishes indexes covering (as of June 2004): Baptisms 1813-1839, Marriages 1754-1837, Burials 1813-1837, together with Kingsbridge Independent Chapel Burials 1793-1897 - for details see their Devon Parish List.

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

  • Baptist Chapel, Baptist Lane, off Fore Street: Registers for 1785-1831 (ZB), 1835-57 (B) in PRO RG 4/2099, 422
  • Ebenezer Wesleyan Chapel, Fore Street: Registers for 1813-37 (C) in PRO RG 4/1088
  • Ebenezer Presbyterian/Independent/Congregational Chapel, Fore Street: Registers for 1775-1837 (ZC), 1826-37 (B) in PRO RG 4/1212, 413; 1774-1931 (C), 1837-97, 1906-42 (M), 1793-1897 (B) at DRO
  • Society of Friends: Registers for 1776-94 (Z) in PRO RG 6/275

Entered into the IGI (as of Jan 1993): Parish Church Christenings 1618-1797 Marriages 1612-1837, Baptist Chapel Births 1785-1813, Ebenezer Independent Chapel Christenings 1775-1837, Ebenezer Wesleyan Methodist Chapel Christenings 1813-1837.

Transcripts of St Edmund baptisms 1798-1812, St Edmund banns 1837-1894, St Edmund burials 1631-1812, Ebenezer baptisms 1837-1908 and Ebenezer marriages 1837-1897 from the Parishes of the South Hams website.

Index to Kingsbridge Wesleyan Methodist Circuit - Baptisms 1849-1902, from the Parishes of the South Hams website.

Randolph, Prebendary. Antient Mss. in Kingsbridge Church. Western Antiquary 6 (1886-87), pp.145-146, 184-185, 216-217, 240-242, 265-266 and 294; 7 (1887) pp.10-11, 37-38, 85-86, 104-105, 131-132, 158-159, 210-212, 234-235, and 259-261; 8 (1888) pp.14-15, 86-87, 118-120, 167-168, and 236-237; 9 (1889-90) pp.126, 160-01; 10 (1891) pp.64-65, 102-103 and 183-185; 11 (1891-1892) pp.37-39.

Deanery of Woodleigh Baptisms 1813-1839, Marriages 1754-1837 and Burials 1813-1988 - CD-ROM, Exeter, Devon FHS (2006). [Index of Aveton Gifford: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837), Bigbury: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837, Burials 1813-1837), Buckland-Tout-Saints: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1818-1822), Burials (1813-1988), Charleton: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1780-1812), Chivelstone: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1800-1837), Churchstow: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1848), Dodbrooke: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837), East Allington: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837), East Portlemouth: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837), Kingsbridge: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837), Kingsbridge Ind.: Burials (1793-1897), Loddiswell: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837), Malborough: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837), Moreleigh: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837), Ringmore: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1764-1814), Salcombe: Baptisms (1813-1839), Sherford: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1800-1837), Slapton: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837), South Huish: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1856), South Milton: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1838), South Pool: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1838), Stokenham: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837), Stokenham Ind.: Burials (1795-1836), Thurlstone: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1838), West Alvington: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837), Woodleigh: Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837)]


Court Records

Hawkings, David T. Civil Actions at the Quarter Sessions, Family Tree Magazine, vol. 23, no. 3, (2007) pp.22-23. [Provides full transcript of an 1850 petition from 68 Kingsbridge and Dodbrooke inhabitants requesting that a police oficer be appointed - with list of names, occupations and parish]


Description & Travel

Kingsbridge and Area Tourist Information Centre web site.

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

Adey, W.T. All about Kingsbridge and Salcombe illustrated guide for the use of visitors. Kingsbridge: B. Wyatt. (1903) 105p: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library - sB/KIN 1/1903/ADE] [ArchiveCD]

Anderson, Arthur H. Kingsbridge, Salcombe, and the Kingsbridge Estuary. (1916) [Plymouth Library]

[Hawkins, A]. Kingsbridge and Salcombe, with the intermediate estuary, historically and topographically depicted. Kingsbridge: R.Southwood (1819) vi, 210p, plates: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library - B/KIN/0001/KIN] [Index]

Rowe, Charles R. Guide to the West of England holiday resorts. Part 4: Kingsbridge and neighbourhood, Plymouth, Western Morning [1908] 32p: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library pDEV/1908/ROW]

Merrell's guide: Salcombe, Kingsbridge, South Devon (4th ed.), Salcombe, Merrell [1920] 46, [4]p: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library pB/SAL 3/1920/MER]

A pictorial and descriptive guide to Torquay, Paignton, Dartmouth, Kingsbridge, Totnes and other South Devon resorts (14th ed), London, Ward, Lock & Co. (1934) xxxii, 132p, 48pls: maps. [Westcountry Studies Library B/TOR 7/1934/PIC]

Kigsbridge Guide, (c1952). [Devon FHS Library 942.35/KIN]

You can see pictures of Kingsbridge which are provided by:



Transcriptions of the entries in Pigot & Co's Devon (1830) and White's Devonshire Directory (1850), covering Kingsbridge, Dodbrooke, and the Kingsbridge Union, by Terry Partridge.

Scanned image of Kelly's Directory entry (1923), for Kingsbridge and Dodbrooke, from the Parishes of the South Hams website.



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.

The South Hams Genealogical Information Resource website offers lookups in their records concerning this parish.

Cove, Mary. Notes on the history of the Cove family, Kingsbridge History Society Recorder 6, 1991, pp. 3-7. [17-20th c.]

Dicksee, Lorraine. Elizabeth Cole: Convict and First Fleeter, Devon Family Historian, vol. 179, (2021) pp.6-9.

Kerswell, Bob. Bob Kerswell: His Friends Remember, Short Run Press (2005) 149 pp. [DFHS Library B/KER]

Lidstone, Hugh H.R.G. Lidstone of the South Hams of Devon, Mrs. A. Lidstone, Ledstone Farm, Kingsbridge, S. Devon TQ7 2HQ (n.d.).



Collins, Lyn. Heraldry in the Kingsbridge Parish Churches. Kingsbridge History Society Recorder 2 (1989) pp.9-11.



Account of a Visit by John and Abigail Adams to Kingsbridge in 1787, by Kathryn Barnett.

Ann Lidstone, a Kingsbridge local historian, is pleased to answer questions, or to pass them on to others who can help.

Barber, Chips. Around and about the Kingsbridge estuary. Exeter: Obelisk Publications (2005) 32p [ISBN 1903585554]

Born, Anne. A history of Kingsbridge and Salcombe. Chichester: Phillimore,1986, 179 pp., [16] pp. of plates: ill., maps, 1 coat of arms, facsims., ports. ; 26 cm. ISBN: 0850336082.

Born, Anne & Kathy Tanner. Kingsbridge, Devon. Kingsbridge: Kathy Tanner (1986) 24p: ill, map. [Westcountry Studies Library - pB/KIN 1/0001/BOR] [Index]

Davies, W. Notes on Kingsbridge documents, etc. Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol. 33 (1901) pp. 651-656. [Index]

Dymond, Robert. Kingsbridge and Dodbrooke: an historical sketch. Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol. 9, (1877) pp. 143-155. [Index]

Elliot, Edmund A.S., M.R.C.S., M.B.O.U. A Century’s Work on Ornithology in the Kingsbridge District. Trans. Devon Assoc. Vol. XXIX. (1897), pp. 167-174. [Index]

Fairweather, J. Salcombe, Kingsbridge, and Neighbourhood, a descriptive and historical guide to all places of interest between Start Bay and the River Avon. (1897) [Westcountry Studies Library, Plymouth Library]

Fox, Sarah Prideaux Kingsbridge estuary with rambles in the neighbourhood. London: Hamilton Adams & Co.(1864). 172pp. [Index]

Fox, S.P. History of Kingsbridge, Salcombe and Neighbourhood. (c1870) [Westcountry Studies Library]

Fox, S.P. Kingsbridge and its Surroundings. Plymouth: The Author (1874) 272p: ill. [Index] [Westcountry Studies Library - B/KIN/0001/FOX]

Hawkins, Abraham. Kingsbridge and Salcombe, with the intermediate estuary, historically and topographically depicted. Kingsbridge, D. Southwood (1819) 210 pp.

Hawkins, A. A Narrative of the Persecutions agaist Dissenters in Kingsbridge. (1821) [Westcountry Studies Library]

Luscombe, E. Myrtles and Aloes: Or, our Salcombe sketch book; with a . . . discursive gossip about Kingsbridge by Francis Young. (1861) [Westcountry Studies Library, Plymouth Library] [Index]

Petter, H.M. and Chitty, A. The Architectural Heritage of Kingsbridge & District Then & Now. Dartington Amenity Research Trust, for the South Hams Society. 30p. [ISBN 0 9500410 6 8]

Saville, Alan. Kingsbridge nonconformists. Kingsbridge History Society (1994) 24p. [Westcountry Studies Library - p285/KIN/SAV]

Stevens-Cox, G. An Elizabethan Painting of Kingsbridge, Devon. (1972) [Torquay Library]

Tanner, Kathy. Bringing the railway to Kingsbridge (Cookworthy papers series no. 2). Kingsbridge: Cookworthy Mus. (1978) 4p: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library - p385/KIN/TAN]

Tanner, Kathy. Coaching days (Cookworthy papers series no. 3). Kingsbridge: Cookworthy Mus. (1978) 4p: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library - p388.341/KIN/TAN]

Tanner, Kathy and Len Fairweather. Old Kingsbridge. Kingsbridge: Cookworthy Mus. (1981) 32p: chiefly ill: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library - pxB/KIN 1/0002/TAN

Trahair, Philippa. Stancombe: a Devon manor. Kingsbridge: Forever Publications,1995, 76 pp. ill., geneal. tables, maps, plans, ports.ISBN: 0952575604 (20).

Williams, K. and Reynolds, D. The Kingsbridge Branch: The Primrose Line, Oxford Publishing co. (1977). [ISBN 0860930017] [Devon FHS Library 942.35/KIN]

Wyatt, B. Kingsbridge and Neighbourhood. (1900)

The Blizzard in the South Hams of Devonshire: being a record of the great storm of Monday and Tuesday, March 9 and 10, 1891, Kingsbridge, Jas. Fairweather (1891) 64 pp. [Westcountry Studies Library p551.555/SOU/BLI]

Around Kingsbridge in old photographs from the Cookworthy Museum collection. Gloucester: Sutton,1988, 160 pp. chiefly ill., ports. ; 22 cm. ISBN: 0862994357 (pbk).



Listing of Tenants of the Earl of Devon. Kingsbridge History Society Recorder, vol. 4 (1990) pp. 15-19, vol. 5 (1991) 9-15.

Manuscript survey of the Manor of Kingsbridge, c 1640. [Lists approx. 60 tenants with details of land, tenements, gardes held, location, etc. - bookseller's catalogue quoted in Family Tree Magazine, May 2000, p.55.]



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 SX733444 (Lat/Lon: 50.285923, -3.779817), Kingsbridge which are provided by:


Military History

Lane, Alan. Three Killed in S. W Farmhouse, Devon Family Historian, vol. 121, (2007) pp.23. [Transcript of article in the Western Evening Herald, February 17 1943, about casualties of a bombing raid - surnames Bullen, Lane, Newell, Brown


Names, Personal

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



Kingsbridge Gazette - regional electronic journal.

The William Cookworthy Museum (The Old Grammar School, 108 Fore Street, Kingsbridge, Devon - Tel: Kingsbridge 3235) has extensive holdings of the Kingsbridge Gazette, and are indexing all references to personal names in it. They offer a search service not only of this index, but also for other information about local families and local history.


Probate Records

Will of Nicholas Gillard (1816), transcribed by Jim Robbens

The wills of Thomas Burnell (1809), Elizabeth Higman (1810), Elizabeth Cranch (1817) and William Cranch (1821) transcribed by Kathryn Barnett.

Wills of John Hingston (1817) , Rachel Hingston (1824) and Catherine Weymouth (1838), transcribed by Ros Dunning.

Will of Thomas Clieffe (1658), transcribed by Ronnie Munday.



Graf, W.S. Kingsbridge Grammar School (founded 1670), Kingsbridge, Lugger Bros, Printers.