"KINGSWEAR is a remarkably small parish, on a point of land projecting into the river Dart, opposite Dartmouth, and contracting the entrance to the harbour. It contains only 270 inhabitants, and 107A. 2R. 10P. of land. J.F. Luttrell, Esq., is chief owner and also lord of the manor, which was anciently a royal demesne, and had a small castle or fort, the walls of which are still standing, and near them are the ruins of another fort, where tradition says, the chain was fixed to prevent hostile ships from entering the harbour. On the brow of the hill, overlooking the village, are some embankments, which were thrown up during the siege of Dartmouth, in 1646. The Beacon, an elegant mansion, built in 1848, on a delightful eminence, overlooking the Dart, is the seat of A.H. Holdsworth, Esq. The Church (St. Thomas a Beckett,) was rebuilt at the cost of £1600, in 1847, except the tower, which contains a clock and three bells. It is in the decorated style, and is neatly fitted up with open benches, &c. The perpetual curacy. valued in 1831, at £99, is in the patronage of the Vicar of Brixham, and incumbency of the Rev. John Smart. . . . " [From White's Devonshire Directory (1850)]

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





Adams, Maxwell (Ed.) Joseph Arthur Reeve [Obituary] Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol. 47, (1915), p. 55. [Transcript]

Brooking-Rowe, J. (Ed.) Charles Seale-Hayne, M.P. [Obituary] Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol. XXXVI, (1904), pp. 37-38. [Transcript]

Gill, Crispin. Sir Humphrey Gilbert. Trans. Devon. Assoc. 115, (1983) pp.37-49: ill. [Sea captain, 1537-1583]



Kingswear Parish Council provide a searchable transcript of burial registers for Kingswear Cemetery, founded in the 1880s when the churchyard filled up.


Church History

Watkin, Hugh R. The foundation and early history of Dartmouth and Kingswear churches. Trans.Dev.Assoc.; vol 43 (1911), pp.149-165. [Index]


Church Records

Parish Registers going back to 1601 are held in the Devon Record Office.

The Devon FHS publishes indexes covering (as of June 2004): Baptisms 1813-1839, Marriages 1754-1837, Burials 1780-1837 - for details see their Devon Parish List.

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

Deanery of Ipplepen: Photographs of the churches and extracts from White's Devonshire Directory 1850. CD - Devon FHS (2012). [An index of baptisms, marriages and burials in the parishes of: Abbotskerswell Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1756-1837), Burials (1813-1837); Berry Pomeroy Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837); Brixham All Saints Baptisms (1826-1839), Marriages (1826-1837), Burials (1831-1832); Brixham St Mary Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837); Broadhempston Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1681-1837), Burials (1813-1837); Churston Ferrers Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1835), Burials (1800-1837); Cockington Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1780-1834); Coffinswell Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1857); Denbury Baptisms (1813-1840), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1800-1837); Ipplepen Baptisms (1813-1840), Marriages (1754-1843), Burials (1813-1837); Kingskerswell Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837); Kingswear Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1755-1837), Burials (1780-1837); Littlehempston Baptisms (1813-1840), Marriages (1731-1837), Burials (1813-1840); Marldon Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837); Paignton Baptisms (1813-1841), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837); Paignton Independent Burials (1826-1836); Staverton Baptisms (1813-1840), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837); Stoke Gabriel Baptisms (1813-1840), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837); Torbryan Baptisms (1813-1839), Marriages (1754-1838), Burials (1813-1854); Tormohun Baptisms (1813-1840), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837); Torquay St Marychurch Baptisms (1813-1840), Marriages (1754-1837), Burials (1813-1837); Wolborough Baptisms (1813-1840), Marriages (1754-1839), Burials (1813-1837); Woodland Baptisms (1813-1840), Marriages (1755-1835), Burials (1813-1838).]


Description & Travel

Welcome to Kingswear - community website.

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

Conservation Area Appraisal for Kingswear - an interesting account of the area, with numerous photographs and maps [Downloadable PDF].

Barber, Chips. Dartmouth and Kingswear. Pinhoe, Exeter: Obelisk Publications. [ISBN 1899073027].

Seymour, Deryck. Dart country: featuring the area in and around Stoke Gabriel, Churston, Kingswear and Galmpton, Exeter, Obelisk Publications (1996) 40 pp. [ISBN 1899073329] [Westcountry Studies Library pB/DAR 1/1996/SEY]

You can see pictures of Kingswear which are provided by:



Transcription of the entry in White's Devonshire Directory (1850) by Terry Partridge.


Emigration & Immigration

Davey, F.A., Watts, S.G. Westward Look: Devon Pioneers and Pilgrims in the New World. Town & Country Press Ltd., 42 Rectory Lane, Bracknell, Berks. (1970) 56p. ["Nich Shapleigh - Wars With The Indians" [of Kingswear] - pp.49-50]



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.

Paige, William. I Remarkable Generation of a South Devon Family, Devon Family Historian, vol. 170, (2019) pp.40-43. [William Paige (1787-1874 and descendants.]



Freeman, Ray. Brownstone Farm, near Kingswear: a Devon farm through seven centuries. [Dartmouth]: Dartmouth History Research Group,1990, 24 pp. ill., maps. [Available from Google Books]

Jaine, T. The Architectural Heritage of Dartmouth Kingswear & District Then & Now. Dartington Amenity Research Trust, for the Dartmouth and Kingswear Society. 30 pp. [ISBN 0 9500410 768]

Higgins, Tony. The Free French in Kingswear. Dartmouth History Research Group (1993) 24p: ill, map. [ISBN 189901103x]

Russell, Percy and Gladys York. Kingswear and neighbourhood. Trans. Devon Association (1953) pp56-86, plates: maps.



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

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SX882510 (Lat/Lon: 50.348271, -3.572714), Kingswear which are provided by:



The Dartmouth and Kingswear Society website.