"SLAPTON, a pleasant village on the acclivity, rising from the central part of the coast of Start Bay, 6 miles S.W. by S. of Dartmouth, has in its parish 726 inhabitants, 3260 acres of tithe free land, and many scattered houses, commanding fine views of the bay and coast. On the beach is the Sands Hotel, from which visitors have a fine promenade at low water along the sands to within a mile of Start point. The hotel is elegantly fitted up for the accommodation of visitors, and about 200 yards from the beach is a long fresh-water lake of about 300 acres, called the Ley or Hey, well stocked with fish and wild fowl, and divided from the sea in some places only by a ridge called the Long Sand. The manor is dismembered, and was formerly held of the See of Exeter, by the service of being steward at the bishop's installation feast. Sir R. L. Newman, Bart., Major Bent, and the Paige, Tucker, Holdsworth, Bastard, Wise, Wakeham, and other families have freehold estates here. Pole or Poole Priory, in this parish, was long the seat of the Brians, Ameridiths, and Hawkins, and now belongs to Mr. Paige. The ruins of the old mansion were removed about 1800, except the lofty tower, which stands in the garden. The Church (St. Mary,) is an ancient structure, with a tower and five bells. The screen is beautiful, and the clustered columns have foliated capitals. The living is a perpetual curacy, valued at only £96 per annum, arising from a modus of £15, and land here and at Halwell. Wm. Page, Esq., is the patron, and the Rev. T. G. Dickenson, M.A., is the incumbent. . . ." [From White's Devonshire Directory (1850)]

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



Fairweather, Jarvis. A South Hams farmer in 1814: the diary of Jarvis Fairweather / transcribed with an introduction & short glossary by K.S.Coutin. Photocopy [1990?] 13p. [Westcountry Studies Library - px630.924/SLA/FAI]



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



Name index to the 1841 census (partial), from the Parishes of the South Hams website.


Church History

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


Church Records

Parish Registers going back to 1634 are held in the Devon Record Office.

Transcripts of the Parish Registers going back to 1755, and of the Bishops' Transcripts going back to 1605, are held in a special collection in the Westcountry Studies Library.

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

Index to Slapton, St James the Great burials (1789-1800), from the Parishes of the South Hams website.

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

  • Wesleyan Chapel: Registers for c1811-37 - see Brixham Circuit, Kingsbridge (PRO RG 4/842, 1088)

Entered into the IGI (as of Jan 1993): Parish Church Christenings 1606-1853 Marriages 1606-1738, 1755-1837.

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)]


Description & Travel

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

Slapton Village Community Website.

You can see pictures of Slapton which are provided by:



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

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



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



Drake, Wilfred. Ancient Heraldic Glass in Slapton Church. Devon & Cornwall Notes and Queries vol. VI, (January 1910 to October 1911), illus. p. 149. [Transcript]

Fulford, Francis. Ancient Heraldic Glass in Slapton Church. Devon & Cornwall Notes and Queries vol. VI, (January 1910 to October 1911), p. 215. [Transcript]

Fulford, Francis. Ancient Heraldic Glass in Slapton Church. Devon & Cornwall Notes and Queries vol. VII, (1912-1913), Exeter: James G. Commin. 1913, p. 46. [Transcript]

Reichel, Oswald J. and Howard H.G.. Ancient Heraldic Glass in Slapton Church. Devon & Cornwall Notes and Queries vol. VI, (January 1910 to October 1911), illus. p. 149. [Transcript]

W., F. Ancient Heraldic Glass in Slapton Church. Devon & Cornwall Notes and Queries vol. VI, (January 1910 to October 1911), pp. 253-254. [Transcript]



Bradbeer, Grace. The Land That Changed Its Face: The Evacuation of Devon's South Hams 1943-1944. David & Charles, Newton Abbot, Devon (1973). [ISBN 0-7153-5781-6]

Charig, Peter. Slapton: the village past and present including the church, the chantry and the village (7th ed.) [1990] 16p. [Westcountry Studies Library - pB/SLA/0001/CHA]

Stanes, Robin. A Fortunate Place: a History of Slapton. London: Field Studies Council (1983) 116p: ill, maps, ports [ISBN 090151702x] [SoG DE/L 92]

Your Devon? Slapton, Devon Family Historian, No. 70, May 1994, pp. 14-17.


Land & Property

Windeatt, Edward. Slapton Manor. In First Report of the Committee on Peculiar Tenures of Land. Trans. Devon Assoc., 1880, Vol XII, p. 155. [Transcript]



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

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SX820450 (Lat/Lon: 50.293122, -3.65794), Slapton which are provided by:


Military History

Sherman Tank - "a memorial to the tragedy of Exercise Tiger.

Exercise Tiger - information provided by the US Naval Historical Center.

Slapton Sands Tank - from the Submerges website.

Operation Tiger - from Combined Operations website.

Clamp, Arthur L. Exercises Tiger and Fabius: an illustrated account of the American forces assault exercises held at Slapton Sands in 1944. [Plymouth]: [The Author] [1980] 16p: ill, map. [Westcountry Studies Library - px940.540973/SLA/CLA]

Clamp, Arthur L. The American Assault Exercises at Slapton Sands, Devon, in 1944, Plymouth, P.D.S. Printers (n.d.) 16 pp.

Hoyt, Edwin P. The invasion before Normandy: the secret battle of Slapton Sands [New ed.]. 210p, plates: ill. [ISBN 0709032668]

Lewis, Nigel. Channel firing: tragedy of Exercise Tiger. - New ed. Dartmouth: Harbour Books (1994) xii, 308p, [8]pls: ill, maps. [ISBN 0907906125]

Murch, Muriel, Murch, David and Fairweather, Len. The American forces at Salcombe and Slapton during World War 2, [Salcombe?]: [The authors?], (1984) 40p: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library px940.540973/SOU/MUR]

Small, Ken. The Forgotten Dead. Bloomsbury Publishing Ltd., London (1989). [ISBN 0-7475-0433-4] [An account of how nearly 1000 American servicemen lost their lives during Exercise Tiger off Slapton Sands in 1944, and of Ken Small's tremendous effort to salvage a Sherman tank from the sea to create a memorial to those killed whilst training for the D-day landings.]

Illustrated account of Slapton exercises. After the Battle. No. 44 (1984) pp 1-31: ill, maps.

The sacrifice of the South Hams, 1943-1944, [Slapton], [Commem. Cttee.] [1984] 7 pp. [Westcountry Studies Library pB/SOU 2/1943/SAC


Probate Records

Wills of Abraham Jarvis (1844) and Elizabeth Jarvis (1852), transcribed by Melba Jarvis Miller.

Will of Ann Yeoman (1842) transcribed by Ros Dunning.



Yallop, H J. Slapton College. Trans. Devon. Assoc. 91 (1959) pp.138-48.

Slapton School Register - 1840, Exeter, Devon Family History Society, (Booklet & PDF D062). [Foreword]