"WITHERIDGE, a small, clean, and well-built town, with an open square, or market place, in the centre . . . is pleasantly situated on the south-eastern acclivity of the Little Dart river, 10 miles W. of Tiverton, 9 miles S.E. by S. of South Molton, and 8 miles E. of Chulmleigh. Its parish contains 1399 inhabitants, and 9958 acres of land, on both sides of the river, picturesquely broken into hill and valley, and including many scattered farm-houses, &c. . . . The Agricultural Association of Witheridge and six neighbouring parishes, has a numerous list of members, and holds its meetings and its ploughing matches here. The manor and hundred of Witheridge was anciently held by the Fitzpayne, Poleyne, Marchant, Chichester, and other families. The Hon. Newton Fellowes is now lord of the manor, and owner of a great part of the parish, and the rest belongs to the Rev. W.P. Thomas, and many smaller free-holders. . . . The Church (St. John,) is a large and handsome structure, with a tower, which contains five bells, and was heightened 40 feet a few years ago, when the ancient decayed wooden spire was taken down. . . . The rectory, valued in K.B. at £23. 10s. 5d., and in 1831 at £450, is in the patronage of the Rev. W.P. Thomas, and incumbency of the Rev. J.P. Benson, M.A., for whom a new Vicarage House is about to be erected. . . ." [From White's Devonshire Directory (1850)]

A parish in Witheridge Hundred, the Archdeaconry of Barnstaple, and the Diocese of Exeter.


Archives & Libraries

The Witheridge Historical Archive - "This site was designed with the intention of providing a detailed history of the village and parish of Witheridge. A great deal of hard work by a small, but dedicated team, has led to the accumulation of a large quantity of material which is available for study."



The tragic death of Herbert Cruwys of Witheridge, transcribed by Debbie Kennett from the North Devon Journal 1891.

Charge of incendiarism against Emily Beer, transcribed by Debbie Kennett from Trewman's Exeter Flying Post 1892.

William Partridge, an account from the Witheridge Historical Archive.

Gutch, J.M. Caraboo: a narrative of singular imposition...by Mary Willcocks alias Baker, alias Bakerstendht, alias Caraboo, Princess of Javasu. London: Baldwin, Cradock & Joy (1817) 68p: ports. [Westcountry Studies Library - s920/WIL]

Leonard, A.J.K and Sproat, Margaret. Caraboo - Princess of Jarva. Devon Life vol. 6 no. 46 (1970) pp.16-17. [1791-1864]

McCabe, Helen. Two For a Lie, Peacock Publishing Ltd (1995) 350 pp. [ISBN: 0952540401] [Historical novel based on the story of Princess Caraboo]



MIs for this parish are included in the Devon FHS and NDA North Devon indexes - see under Cemeteries on the main Devon page.

A transcription of the Memorial Inscriptions for the Church of St John the Baptist is held in the Society of Genealogist's Library, in Vol. 8 of Devon Memorial inscriptions (DE/M23).



Transcripts of the 1891 Census and the 1901 Census by David Taylor.

Snetzler, M.F. North Devon Surname Index to the Census. Microfiche: M.F. Snetzler. [Covers 1841, 1861, 1871 and 1881 census records for this parish]


Church History

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

Lucas, Eric P. Methodism in Witheridge, 1809-1959. Wingate: E.P.Lucas (1959) 38p: ill, ports. [Westcountry Studies Library - 287.1/WIT/LUC]


Church Records

Parish Registers going back to 1586 are held in the Devon Record Office.

Transcripts of the Parish Registers going back to 1585 are held in a special collection in the Westcountry Studies Library.

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

Entered into the IGI (as of Jan 1993): Parish Church Christenings 1585-1837 and Marriages 1585-1837.

Churchwardens List, transcribed by David Taylor.

Transcript of the marriage register of Witheridge 1646-1837. Photocopy of manuscript [1910] 40p. [Westcountry Studies Library - sx929.3/WIT/1646]

The Miscellaneous Series of IHGS Parish Registers, The Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies, 79-82 Northgate, Canterbury, Kent, CT1 1BA.: CD-ROM (n.d.). [The Devon section of contains: Marriages: Berrynarber 1540-1783, Bridgerule 1702-1753, Chardstock 1597-1837, Challacombe 1599-1621 and 1673-1837, Farringdon 1620-1788, Lynton 1591-1837, Pinhoe 1687-1837, Plymouth 1653-1674, Plymstock 1591-1812, Rewe 1686-1836, Witheridge 1646-1837.] [Also LDS Film 90711]

The Deanery of South Molton: An index of baptisms, marriages and burials in the parishes of Bishop's Nympton, Cheldon, Creacombe, Cruwys Morchard, East Anstey, East Woolfardisworthy, East Worlington, George Nympton, King's Nympton, Knowstone, Mariansleigh, Meshaw, Molland, North Molton, Oakford, Puddington, Rackenford, Romansleigh, Rose Ash, Satterleigh, South Molton, Stoodleigh, Templeton, Thelbridge, Twitchen, Warkleigh, Washford Pyne, West Anstey, West Worlington and Witheridge. With photographs of the churches and extracts from White's Directory (1850) and Kelly's Directory of Devonshire (1902). CD-ROM 062, Exeter, Devon FHS (2015). [Bishop's Nympton Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Cheldon Bapt: 1813-1843, Mar: 1755-1835, Bur: 1813-1841; Creacombe Bapt: 1814-1902, Mar: 1759-1835, Bur: 1813-1850; Cruwys Morchard Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; East Anstey Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1836, Bur: 1688-1839; East Woolfardisworthy Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1840, Bur: 1813-1837; East Worlington Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; George Nympton Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1755-1837, Bur: 1790-1837; King's Nympton Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Knowstone Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1740-1836, Bur: 1813-1837; Mariansleigh Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1757-1837, Bur: 1813-1838; Meshaw Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1756-1836, Bur: 1813-1838; Molland Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1838; North Molton Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Oakford Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1840; Puddington Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1759-1836, Bur: 1740-1837; Rackenford Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1800-1837; Romansleigh Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1836, Bur: 1730-1837; Rose Ash Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1850; Satterleigh Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1755-1836, Bur: 1813-1837; South Molton Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Stoodleigh Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Templeton Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1837; Thelbridge Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1853; Twitchen Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1755-1836, Bur: 1813-1837; Warkleigh Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1851; Washford Pyne Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1756-1836, Bur: 1813-1840; West Anstey Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1836, Bur: 1745-1838; West Worlington Bapt: 1813-1840, Mar: 1754-1846, Bur: 1813-1851; Witheridge Bapt: 1813-1839, Mar: 1754-1837, Bur: 1813-1835]


Court Records

Register of Freeholders - Witheridge & Wonford c1816, Exeter, Devon Family History Society, (Booklet & PDF D136). [Foreword]


Description & Travel

Witheridge web-site - a very extensive site, including much historical and genealogical information (archived copy).

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

Grimley, Roger. Wheels Around Witheridge, Bigbury, The Author (1998) 48 pp. ill. [Barnstaple Local Studies Library 388.322/WIT/GRI]

Usmar, John. Witheridge Village Trail and Local Walks, Witheridge, John Usmar (1997) 48 pp. ill. [Barnstaple Local Studies Library 3796.51/WIT3/USM]

You can see pictures of Witheridge which are provided by:



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



Averay, Wendy. Averay/Avery, Devon Family Historian, vol. 136, (Nov 2010) p.32.

Davies, John. A Wistful Journey from Berkshire, Devon Family Historian, vol. 133, (2010) pp.27-28. [Family of George Knapp (b. 1834, Witheridge).]

Jennenns, Roger. Bradford Clock, Devon Family Historian, no. 149, (2014) pp.17-24. [Account of William Bradford of Drayford, a clockmaker b. 1749, and numerous clockmaking descendants.]

Spaughton, Bernard. Burgess from Witheridge [c.1730]. (1992) [Devon FHS Library p929.2/BUR]

Wilkin, W.H. Tanner of Witheridge, Devon & Cornwall Notes & Queries 21, 1940-41, pp. 260-67. See also 22, 1942-46, p. 37. [16-19th c.]



David Tatlor's Witheridge Historical Archive - "Witheridge in Words and Pictures" - is a very extensive site devoted to the history of the village and parish of Witheridge.

Mrs and Mrs Tout (phone and fax 01884 860207) have a large photographic history of Witheridge, together with much written material. Mr John Usmar has written extensively about the history of the parish.

Castlehow, Rev. J.A.S. Witheridge Local History Notes, Typescript (1966) 57 pp. [North Devon Record Office 16129 add/2 PZ1]

Reichel, Rev. Oswald J. The Domesday Hundreds, Part 6: The Hundred of Witheridge. Trans. Devon. Assoc. vol. XXX, (1898) pp. 391-433. [Index]

Tout, P. & F. and Usmar, J. The Book of Witheridge: A parish through the centuries, Halsgrove (3003) 160 pp. [ISBN 1841142530]

Usmar, John. Witheridge Union Society (1829-1924), Typescript (1988) 31 pp. [North Devon Record Office B41addZ]

Usmar, John. Witheridge Carnival (1930-1953), Typescript (1988) 17 pp. [North Devon Record Office B41 Z/Z1]

Usmar, John. Witheridge and the Turnpike Roads, Typescript (1988) 26 pp. [North Devon Record Office B41 Z/Z1]

Usmar, John. Drayford in days gone past. Witheridge: John Usmar (1995) 39p: ill, maps. [Westcountry Studies Library - px301.34/WIT/USM]

Usmar, John, and Peter and Freda Tout. Old Witheridge: bygone days in a Devon village. Exeter: Devon Books,1988, 96 pp. ill., facsims., 1 map, ports. ISBN: 0861148215 (pbk).

Usmar, John, and Peter and Freda Tout. Witheridge Memories (1999) 111p., ill. [Exeter WCSL, Barnstaple Local Studies Library 307/WIT3/WIT] [Memories of 35 Witheridge people]

Usmar, J. Witheridge AFC 1920-2000: A Celebration of Eighty Years of Football in Witheridge, Witheridge, John Usmar (2000) 30 pp. [Barnstaple 796.334/WIT]


Land & Property

Witheridge Land Tax 1780 - 1832, transcribed by David Taylor.



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

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SS803145 (Lat/Lon: 50.91751, -3.704222), Witheridge which are provided by:


Military History

Details from the War Memorial, provided by Emily Hollins.


Names, Personal

Witheridge contributors to a 1678 brief for the rebuilding of St Paul's Cathedral.

Transcription of the Witheridge section of Kelly's Directory for 1902.

Ryall, David. Lest We Forget, War memorials around South Molton. South Molton Archive, 68pp. [ISBN 0 951236 1 4] [Provides an indexed list of names]


Probate Records

Will of Susannah Ditchett (1754), transcribed by Renee Jackaman.



Usmar, John. The Two Schools in Witheridge and How They Became One, Typescript (1988) 76 pp. [North Devon Record Office B41 Z/Z1]



South Molton and District Archive Local History Society web-site (archived copy) - provides details of archive holdings for the twenty-eight parishes in what used to be the South Molton Rural District, lists of publications, etc.