From Kelly's Directory of 1889

Transcribed by Margaret Cook

STOWFORD is a parish and village situated in the valley of one of the tributary streams of the river Lyd, near the road from Okehampton to Launceston, 7 miles north east from Launceston, 3 north-by-west from Coryton station and 3½ east-by-north from Lifton station on the Launceston branch of the Great Western Railway, in the Western division of the county, Lifton hundred and petty sessional division, Tavistock union and county court district, rural deanery of Tavistock, archdeaconry of Totnes and diocese of Exeter. The church of St. John the Baptist is an edifice in the Perpendicular style, and consists of a chancel, with a north aisle, separated from it by a single arch and forming an organ chamber, south aisle with arcade of two arches, nave of three bays, aisles, south porch and an embattled western tower with pinnacles, containing 6 bells, of which the first is dated 1770, the next three 1710, and the tenor 1804: the panelled oak roof is carved and illuminated, and all the windows at the east end and in the north aisle of the nave are stained: there are several elaborately executed marble altar tombs and mural monuments, mostly of the 18th century, with effigies, medallions and inscriptions to members of the Harris family : the church was restored in 1874 at a cost of over £4,000, from designs of the late Sir George Gilbert Scott R.A. when a great profusion of carved oak-work was introduced : the beautiful bench ends, pulpit and organ-case being replicas of noted examples of oak carving existing in this and the adjacent counties : there are 140 sittings. The register of baptisms and burials dates from the year 1707; marriages 1709. The living is a rectory, gross yearly income from tithe-rent charge £250. with residence and 55 acres of glebe, in the gift of and held since 1866 by the Rev. John Bidlake Wollocombe M.A. of Trinity College, Oxford. There are Bible Christian and Baptist chapels at Portgate. Haine, the seat of Arthur Blackburn Esq. who is lord of the manor and principal landowner, is a noble stone building in the Tudor-Gothic style, formerly the seat of the Harris family: it contains a quantity of good oak carving and antique furniture, and numerous oil paintings, principally of the Italian school. The soil is loamy; subsoil, clay and slate. The chief crops are wheat, oats, barley and pasture. The area is 3,690 acres; rateable value, £2,443; the population in 1881 was 392. Parish Clerk, William Brook.
Letters through Lew Down R.S.O. which is the nearest money order office and letter box, arrive at 8 a.m.; the nearest telegraph offices are at Lifton & Coryton railway stations. Parochial School (mixed), endowed by the late Mrs. Harris & the late Mrs. Doyle, with the rental of lands, now producing £23 & £9 respectively; the building was converted to its present use about 1840, having previously been the "poor house;" it was enlarged in 1873, for 70 children; average attendance, 38; William Ford Deadman, master.

[names marked thus* receive their letters through Lifton R.S.O.]

Blackburn Arthur, Haine.
Haycraft John, Alleford lake.
Wollocombe Rev. John Bidlake, M.A. Rectory.


*Box Wm, Harris Arms P.H. Portgate
Braund Charlotte (Mrs.), farmer, Chapel
Brook William, builder
Brown Wm. shopkeeper, Stowford Barton
* Chegwyn John, cattle dealer, Sprytown
*Chegwyn John, jun. farmer, Sprytown
*Clifton Maria (Mrs.), Royal Oak P.H.
Cobbledick George, blacksmith.
*Cole Samuel, miller(water) & farmer, Spry mill.
*Coombe Jacob, farmer, Sprytown.
Coombe William, farmer, Castle.
*Down John, carpenter, Portgate.
*Hill Richard, farmer, Sprytown.
*Littlejohn William, shoe ma. Portgate
Northey Richard, farmer
Palmer & Sons, farmers, Milford.
Prout John Barratt, farmer, Stone Park
*Prout Thomas Rowe, shopkeeper, Portgate
Smale James, farmer
Squance John, farmer, Sheherds
Tancock Wm. cattle dealer, Haine farm
Tooke John, farmer & miller(water), Broadmoor head & Haine mill
Trewin Thomas, farmer, South farm
* Tubb John, shopkeeper, Portgate
Wise George, farmer, Rowden

Brian Randell, 22 Mar 2004