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WYNARDS ALMSHOUSES

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Description:Wynards almshouses were converted into a fortified outwork of some importance during the Royalist siege, covering the line of the Magdalen Road, and overlooking the Shitbrook valley from the west. That Wynards was a defended site is known from documentary sources, which reveal that in January 1642 instructions were issued that ‘the Winners be made goode and the Street before it’ (Stoyle, M., 1988, Exeter City Defences Project: Documentary evidence for the Civil War defences of Exeter, 1642-3, EMAFU report No. 88.12/ 92.10, x). Wynards formed part of a defensive envelope constructed on the east side of the city around the South Gate, and in all probability was linked to the city lines behind it by a covered way or other defensive structure which would permit the movement of troops from within the city to the outpost in relative safety Monument Number 10326.00). The position would also have been joined to others in the same defensive line with similar protective entrenchments. It was probably the stretch of entrenchment between Wynards and the city wall which was breached by the Royalist attack of Colonels Bamfield and Chudley in September of 1643. Although the Almshouses themselves survive today, the defensive works around them do not. It seems most likely that the site was furnished with a ditch and rampart surrounding it. When the successful attack had been made and the outer lines breached, the guns deployed at Wynards were turned upon the South Gate itself, prompting the surrender of the city to Prince Maurice and the crown.
District:Exeter
County:Devon
Grid reference:SX923923
Map reference: [ EPSG:27700] 292322, 92326
Periods:1640 - 1650
CIVIL WAR - UNDER PARLIAMENTARIANS
Subjects:FORTIFIED HOUSE
Identifiers:[ ADS] Depositor ID - 10316.01

People Involved:

  • [ Publisher] Exeter City Council

Bibliographic References:

  • Pevsner, N. (1952) The Buildings of England: South Devon, p. 164. Penguin, Harmondsworth.
  • Stoyle, M. (1992) Exeter City Defences Project: Documentary evidence for the Civil War defences of Exeter, 1642-3 in EMAFU Report No. 92.10
  • Stoyle, M. (1988) Exeter City Defences Project: Documentary evidence for the Civil War defences of Exeter, 1642-3 in EMAFU Report No. 88.12