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HER Number:MDV106984
Name:Holwell Farm, Whitchurch


Farmstead dates to at least the 14th century, based on documentary evidence. Also known as Halwell, Holiewille', 'Halghewille' and 'Hallowyl' in the past. A complex, high status site with twelve buildings depicted on the Tithe Map. Most of the buildings on the northern side of the farm remain. Alterations have taken place to the dwellings, one of which is totally changed from its mid-19th century depiction. House is thought to be Georgian and was the home of John Taylor (designer of the Tavistock Canal in the 1800s).


Grid Reference:SX 500 731
Map Sheet:SX57SW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishWhitchurch
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishWHITCHURCH

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses: none recorded

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • FARMSTEAD (XIII to XIV - 1300 AD? to 1353 AD (Between))
  • HOUSE (Constructed, XVIII to XIX - 1714 AD to 1830 AD (Between))

Full description

Devon County Council, 1838-1848, Tithe Mosaic, approximately 1838-1848 (Cartographic). SDV349431.

Tithe map depiction of 'Halwell' shows at least twelve buildings, including two dwellings. 314 on Apportionment; houses and yards. This complex high status site also has 'pleasure grounds' (295-6) listed along with numerous meadows.

Ordnance Survey, 1880-1899, First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map (Cartographic). SDV336179.

'Holwell House (on the site of a mansion)' depicted on the late 19th century map. Alterations visible to a number of buildings, including the northern dwelling and several small buildings added by this time.

Gover, J. E. B. + Mawer, A. + Stenton, F. M., 1931, The Place-Names of Devon: Part One, 249 (Monograph). SDV1312.

Holwell is 'Holiewille' in 1353, 'Halghewille' in 1417, 'Hallowyll' in 1514 ('holy well').

Tavistock and District Local History Society, 2002, Whitchuch Parish. A short History of a Devon Parish, 26 (Monograph). SDV363278.

Holwell Manor
Holwell House said to be a Grade II listed building. For nearly 300 years, until the end of the 18th century, Holwell was the home of the Glanvill, or Glanvile family, who came to Whitchurch in the 15th century. Some of the Glanvill family listed here.
Early in the 19th century (until 1812), it was the home of John Taylor who was the manager of the Wheal Friendship Mine in Mary Tavy and a key figure in the construction of the Tavistock Canal. An existing gravel track starting near the entrance into Holwell and heading across Whitchurch Down in the direction of Mary Tavy is reputed to have been constructed by Taylor.

White, P., 2013, Previously Unsurveyed Dartmoor Historic Farmsteads (Un-published). SDV352501.

Included on list. No further detail provided.

Ordnance Survey, 2014, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV355681.

The modern map shows some changes to a few of the buildings but the layout is generally the same as the early 20th century historic map.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV1312Monograph: Gover, J. E. B. + Mawer, A. + Stenton, F. M.. 1931. The Place-Names of Devon: Part One. The Place-Names of Devon: Part One. VIII. A5 Hardback. 249.
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV349431Cartographic: Devon County Council. 1838-1848. Tithe Mosaic, approximately 1838-1848. Digitised Tithe Map. Digital.
SDV352501Un-published: White, P.. 2013. Previously Unsurveyed Dartmoor Historic Farmsteads. Excel Spreadsheet.
SDV355681Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2014. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #66501 ]

Associated Monuments

MDV126658Parent of: Old house and outbuilding at Holwell, Whitchurch (Building)
MDV3590Related to: Holwell medieval manor, Whitchurch (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Oct 21 2019 1:00PM