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HER Number:MDV1095
Name:St. Mary's Parish Church, Exbourne


Parish church, some early 14th century fabric with 15th century rebuilding and early 16th century addition, restored 1884 with further addition.


Grid Reference:SS 602 019
Map Sheet:SS60SW
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishExbourne
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishEXBOURNE

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Church of England HER: 5136
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SS60SW/6
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II*): 92936

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • PARISH CHURCH (XIV to XIX - 1301 AD to 1900 AD (Between))

Full description

DOE 1960, Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV225670.

Early 14th century work, beautiful east window. It was enlarged and refashioned in the 15th century. Good granite ashlared tower. Square framed rood screen 15th century. Good modern seating by herbert read (doe 1960).

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV225672.

Hoskins, w. G. /devon/(1954)393.

Untitled Source (Aerial Photograph). SDV225673.

Aph=dap/fd 10a,11(16/7/1985).

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV225674.

Doe/hhr:okehampton rural district/(-/2/1960)12.

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV225675.


Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV225676.


Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV225677.

Cherry, b. + pevsner, n. /buildings of england:devon/(1989)356-7.

Department of Environment, Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV325839.

Church of st. Mary. Some early c14 fabric with c15 rebuilding and early c16 addition restored 1884 with further addition. Chancel and north wall of have constructed of local stone rubble; tower, porch and south aisle built of granite ashlar. Gable ended slate roof. Nave, chancel, south aisle and south porch, west tower. See doe list for full details (doe).

Untitled Source (Migrated Record). SDV335.

Parish church of st. Mary. Mainly circa 1500. Mostly granite. Well carved modern bench ends. Good bosses in s aisle roof (hoskins).

Baigent, F. J., 1902-3, Stock Box in Exbourne Church (Article in Serial). SDV272878.

Ancient oak box, known as 'the stock box'. Banded with iron and having two locks. Such boxes were often locked inside the parish chest for greater security, usually containing parochial moneys or 'church stock' (sometimes these were the property of some gild connected with the church). Often further secured by a small chain padlock to a staple inside the parish chest, and in this instance the ring atop the box may have been used for this purpose.

Bligh Bond, F., 1903, Devonshire Screens and Rood Lofts. Part II, 457 (Article in Serial). SDV6113.

Rood screen of circa 1420. Removed in 1835 and replaced in 1889 after restoration. Open traceried arcades with pierced spandrels forming rectangular openings under a horizontal head.

Historic England, 2016, National Heritage List for England (National Heritage List for England). SDV359353.

Church of St. Mary. Parish church. Some early C14 fabric with C15 rebuilding and early C16 addition, restored 1884 with further addition. Chancel and north wall of nave constructed of local stone rubble; tower, porch and south aisle built of granite ashlar. Gable ended slate roof. Plan: Nave, chancel, south aisle and south porch, west tower. The chancel shows evidence of earliest work with an early C14 west window, the nave probably dates to the circa early C15 and the tower may be of the same date. Judging by its windows the south aisle is early C16 but the porch built in front of it appears to be earlier. The Church was extensively restored in 1884 by Fulford when the north wall was rebuilt and the vestry and organ chamber added. Apparently evidence of a north transept was found during this work. Exterior: 3-stage West tower with crocketted pinnacles and set-back buttresses. 2- light belfry openings have ogee heads. West doorway has 4-centred head and is hollow chamfered in rebated chamfered square surround. Quatrefoils in spandrels. Image niche above and 1 in buttress to either side which are ogee headed. 3-light west window with surprisingly simple Perpendicular tracery with no cusping. The rebuilt north nave wall has vestry at its east end with hipped roof and projecting stack at right-hand side that cuts across the rood stair projection which has a 2- light granite mullion window. On the north wall of aisle the easterly window re- uses early fabric with 2 cinquefoiled lights and trefoils above. The window to its right is completely restored in Decorated style. The Chancel has a good circa early C14 3-light east window with reticulated tracery. Above it is a datestone of 1656. The south aisle east window is very large of 4-lights with late Perpendicular tracery. On the south side are 3 early C16 3-light granite mullion windows with segmental heads and square hoodmould. There is a similar window at the west end of the aisle. Their mullions have been renewed. Small 2-centred arched priest's doorway probably re-used from original south wall. 1 storey south porch has doorway with depressed 4-centred head, imposts and moulded capitals. Interior: Porch has simple chamfered south doorway with 4-centred head. C17 plank door with trident hinges. Original wagon roof with moulded purlins and principals and renewed bosses. 4-bay granite arcade of Pevsner A-type piers and 4-centred moulded arches. Tall 4-centred tower arch which is double-chamfered. The internal walls are plastered. Crocketted internal arch to east window carved by Hems during restoration. The nave and chancel roofs are late C19 or early C20 boarded wagon roofs. Early but restored wagon roof to aisle with moulded purlins and principals. C15 rood screen extending across nave, originally longer. Considerably restored but retaining mainly original Perpendicular tracery and some of the frieze. Panelled pulpit inscribed "S.W.1665". The font is a composite probably composed of parts from several different fonts: its base and shaft are old but of a different kinds of stone, the bowl is C19. At east end of aisle is wall memorial with inscribed slate flanked by Ionic columns with segmental arch above which has a ball finial. To Simon Westlake who died 1667.

Local History Society, 2017, Heritage Asset Records in Exbourne, not on the HER List at 12/12/2017 (Correspondence). SDV360656.

Memorial iron flag post and weather vane erected on the roof of the church tower in commemoration of the Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria. Temporarily removed and stored at Buskin to permit tower roof repairs.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV225670Migrated Record: DOE 1960.
SDV225672Migrated Record:
SDV225673Aerial Photograph:
SDV225674Migrated Record:
SDV225675Migrated Record:
SDV225676Migrated Record:
SDV225677Migrated Record:
SDV272878Article in Serial: Baigent, F. J.. 1902-3. Stock Box in Exbourne Church. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 2. Unknown.
SDV325839Migrated Record: Department of Environment.
SDV335Migrated Record:
SDV359353National Heritage List for England: Historic England. 2016. National Heritage List for England. Historic Houses Register. Digital.
SDV360656Correspondence: Local History Society. 2017. Heritage Asset Records in Exbourne, not on the HER List at 12/12/2017. Addition of HER record. Digital.
SDV6113Article in Serial: Bligh Bond, F.. 1903. Devonshire Screens and Rood Lofts. Part II. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 35. Digital. 457.

Associated Monuments

MDV107130Parent of: Exbourne Boer War Memorial (Monument)
MDV104752Parent of: First World War Memorial Clock, Exbourne (Monument)
MDV104304Parent of: World War II Memorial in St. Mary's Church (Monument)
MDV94847Related to: Chest Tomb approximately 2 metres south of Porch of St. Mary's Church, Exbourne (Monument)
MDV98267Related to: Chest Tomb approximately 8 metres south-south-east of St. Mary's Church, Exbourne (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Jan 4 2018 11:10AM