South Brent


"BRENT, (SOUTH) a large irregularly built village, in the valley of the small river Avon, has a station on the South Devon Railway, five miles N.E. of Ivybridge, 6 miles W. of Totnes, and 7 miles S.S.W. of Ashburton. Its parish contains 1237 souls, and about 10,100 acres of land of which 6312 acres are cultivated, and the rest open common, &c., in the south-east angle of Dartmoor Forest, where the hills rise boldly from the valleys of the Avon and Erme. The parish includes the small hamlets of Aish, Charford, Harbournford, Lutton, Wonton, Brent Mill, and many scattered farm-houses. South Brent was formerly a market town, and has still two annual fairs, on the last Tuesdays in April and September, the former called the lamb, and the latter the goose fair, but both are extensive marts for sheep, cattle, and horses, held "under the glove," a glove being suspended on a pole during the fairs. The manor belonged to Buckfastleigh Abbey, and was purchased by Sir Wm. Petre after the dissolution. Mr. John Elliott holds the manor of Lord Petre, but most of the land was sold in parcels many years ago, and now belongs to Sir W. P. Carew, Dr. Butter and many smaller owners. The Church (St. Patrick,) is a large ancient fabric, in the decorated style, with a low tower and six bells. The Rev. Nathnl. Cole, M.A., is appropriator of the great tithes, and patron and incumbent of the vicarage, valued in K.B. at £29. 15s. 4½d., and in 1831 at £906. The glebe is 31A. 3R. 37P., and the tithes were commuted in 1839, for £975. 10s. per annum. The Vicarage House is a good residence near the church. The Independents and Weslyans have small chapels here, and on Brent hill are the ruins of an ancient building, supposed to have been a chapel. . . ." [From White's Devonshire Directory (1850)]

A parish in Stanborough Hundred, the Archdeaconry of Totnes and the Diocese of Exeter. Avonwick, whose church was built in 1878, is split between the parishes of Diptford, South Brent, North Huish and Ugborough. Regarded as part of both the South Hams and the Dartmoor area.



Cundy, Jonathan. My Father's Day in Court - Aged eight, Devon Family Historian, no. 185, (2023) pp.30-31. [William Francis Cundy, b. 1910]

Guthrig, Sylvia C. The Tallest Soldier in the British Army, Devon Family Historian, vol. 133, (2010) pp. 8-10. [Henry Barter (b.1892 South Brent)]

Thomas, Gail. William Edgeworth Pritchett Saer, Royal Naval Paymaster, Devon Family Historian, vol. 172, (2019) pp.32-36.

Troup, Frances B. Biographical sketch of the Rev. Christopher Jelinger, M.A. Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol. 32, (1900) pp. 249-270. [1631-1681] [Index]



Brown, Mike. South Brent (Pre-1950 Survey). In Dartmoor Region Monumental Inscriptions Indexes, Vol. 16. Dartmoor Press, PO Box 132, Plymouth PL4 7YL.



Indexes to the 1841 and the 1861 censuses, from the Parishes of the South Hams website.


Church History

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

Note: The parish church is dedicated to St Petroc, not St Patrick, despite what is said in Whie's Devonshire Directory.

Dyer, Albert G. The Methodist Church, South Brent: a brief history 1887-1987. [South Brent]: [The Church] (1987) 7p. [Westcountry Studies Library - p287.1/SOU/DYE]

Fletcher, John Rory. The story of the English Bridgettines of Syon Abbey. South Brent: Syon Abbey (1933) 172p, plates: ill, map. [Westcountry Studies Library - 271.979/DEV/FLE]

Johnston, F.R. Syon Abbey: a short history of the English Brigettines. Eccles and District Hist. Soc. (1964) (12)p: 1ll. [Westcountry Studies Library - 271.979/SOU/JOH]

An account of the church and parish of South Brent from two different sources. [South Brent?]: [The Church?] (1950) [24]p: ill. [Westcountry Studies Library - p726.5//SOU/ACC]


Church Records

Parish Registers going back to 1677 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 - for details see their Devon Parish List.

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

The Deanery of Totnes: An index of baptisms, marriages and burials . . . with photographs of the churches and extracts from White's Devonshire Directory 1850, CD-ROM, Exeter, Devon FHS (2009). [Ashprington: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Blackawton: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Buckfastleigh: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Cornworthy: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1840), Dartington: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Dartmouth St. Clement: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Dartmouth St. Petrox: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Dartmouth St. Saviour: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Dean Prior: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1755-1837), Bur (1790-1837), Diptford: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Dittisham: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Halwell: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1755-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Harberton: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Holne: Bapt (1813-1842), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Rattery: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1800-1837), South Brent: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Stoke Fleming: Bapt (1813-1839), Mar (1754-1837), Bur (1813-1837), Totnes: Bapt (1813-1842), Mar (1754-1837), Bur: (1813-1837)]

Brown, Mike. Pre-1754 Marriage Index for South Brent. Dartmoor Press, P.O. Box 132, Plymouth PL4 7YL (1999)

Brown, Mike. 1754-1812 Burial Indexes: South Brent. RT60, Dartmoor Press (2000).


Description & Travel

South Brent Community Website.

Conservation Area Appraisal for South Brent - an interesting account of the area, with numerous photographs and maps.

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

You can see pictures of South Brent which are provided by:



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

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

Brown, Mike. Trade Directory for Cornwood, Harford, Shaugh Prior, South Brent 1850, 1870, 187, Dartmoor Press (2001).



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



Dartmoor Press Online Magazine's page for this parish (archived copy), with articles, transcriptions, publication details, etc. - highly recommended.

Heraldry and family history of twenty-eight parishes in the archdeaconry of Totnes (2 vols), Exeter, W. Pollard (1887). [Chap. XXII: South Brent - PETRE; Philip PHREAR; HILLIONS of Ashton; Dr GANDY] [Index]



Anstis, Ray. South Brent: A Sentimental Journey, Devon Family Historian, no. 151, (2014) pp.26-28.

Brown, Mike. A Few Sheaves of Devon History [Transcripts]: South Brent, Dartmoor Press (2001).

Van Der Kiste, John and Van Der Kiste, Kim. Ivybridge and South Brent Through Time, Amberley Publishing (2010) 96 pp. [ISBN-10: 184868733] [Contains 90 old photographs, plus 90 corresponding modern photographs of Ivybridge, South Brent, and their surrounding villages and hamlets.]

Wall, Gregory. South Brent and its people remembered. South Brent: G. Wall (1983) 32p: chiefly ill. [Westcountry Studies Library - pxB/SOU 1/1900/WAL]

Wall, Gregory. Portrait of South Brent. South Brent: G. Wall, printed by PDS Printers PL4 0ST (1986) 32p: chiefly ill.

Wall, Greg. The Book of South Brent: Another Portrait of a Dartmoor Community, Halsgrove (Community History Series) (2005) 160 pp. [ISBN: 184114407X] [Index]

Wall, Greg. The Second Book of South Brent: A Miscellany of Out Awver, in Under and Roundabout This Dartmoor Community, Halsgrove (Community History Series) (2009) 160 pp. [ISBN-13: 978-1841147871]

Worthy, Charles. Devonshire Parishes. Exeter: William Pollard (1887) - Vol. 2, pp. 207- 216.


Land & Property

Brown, Mike. South Brent. In "Dartmoor Tithe Apportionments, Vol. 3". The Dartmoor Press (c1997) 16p.



Stansbury, Don. The 1842 tithe map of South Brent. Typescript (1988) 8p. [Westcountry Studies Library - px912.133622/SOU/STA]

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

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SX695602 (Lat/Lon: 50.427114, -3.838608), South Brent which are provided by:


Probate Records

Will of Elizabeth Shute (1806), provided by Ros Dunning.




South Brent Freemasons - history of Dartmoor Lodge.