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HER Number:MDV10971
Name:Site of Battle in 1549 at Fenny Meadow, Feniton

Summary

Fenny Meadow or Bloody Meadow, the site of a battle in July 1549 during the Prayer Book Rebellion between troops led by Lord Russell and rebels from Cornwall and west Devon.

Location

Grid Reference:SY 112 986
Map Sheet:SY19NW
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishFeniton
DistrictEast Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishFENITON

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SY19NW/30
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SY19NW13

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • BATTLEFIELD (XVI - 1549 AD to 1549 AD (Between))

Full description

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

'Fenny Meadow Site of Battle A.D. 1549' marked on 1880s-1890s 25 inch Ordnance Survey map.


Watson, W. H., 1929, A Devonshire Village in the Olden Days, 61 (Article in Serial). SDV338790.

Fenny Meadow. Site of battle, July 1549. Lord Russell's army, en route to raise the seige of Exeter, defeated a force of Cornishmen opposed to the new prayer book, who attempted to block his way.


Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1953, SY19NW13 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV338807.

It is probable that in 1549 the area of Fenny Meadow extended to the river Otter. Pasture land, no visible traces.


Hoskins, W. G., 1954, A New Survey of England: Devon, 234,297 (Monograph). SDV17562.


Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1975, SY19NW13 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV338808.


Weddell, P. J., 1989, A Preliminary Archaeological Assessment of the Preferred Route of the A30 Trunk Road Honiton-Exeter Improvement, 8 (Report - Assessment). SDV336546.


Goodyear, R. I., 1990, Battle Site (Worksheet). SDV338858.

Fenny Meadow. Site of battle, 1549. During the Prayer Book Rebellion on 1549 rebels from Cornwall and the west of Devon unsuccessfully laid seige to Exeter. During this time troops were sent down with Lord Russell to suppress the rebellion. The two sides met at this site just above the river Otter with rebels attempting to block the nearby main road into Exeter. The rebels were defeated here in July 1549 and the relief of Exeter followed. There are unlikely to have been fortifications of any substance here since the battle site was probably chosen at short notice. There may be burials of those who fell in battle as well as miscellaneous weapon finds.


Weddell, P. J., 1991, Archaeological Assessment of the Published Route (preliminary) of the A30 Honiton-Exeter Improvement, 24 (Report - Assessment). SDV337589.

The field in which the battle is said to have taken place is called 'Bloody Meadow'. Used as watermeadows for the last 60 years or so, and ploughed only once in that time. Farmer recalls 2 canon balls found over 50 years ago during trenching for water supply. Wherabouts unknown.


Wessex Archaeology, 1998, A30 Honiton to Exeter Improvements, Devon 1996-8: Proposals for Archaeological Post-excavation: Part III, 5 (Report - non-specific). SDV338771.


Exeter Archaeology, 2002, Archaeological Assessment of a Proposed Development at Feniton Mill, Feniton, 3, 6 (Report - Assessment). SDV338788.

Suggested that fighting may have spread into surrounding fields.


Foard, G. + Hodgkins, A., 2009, Battlefields of the Prayer Book Rebellion: An Archaeological Resource Assessment, 10; figures 1-9 (Report - Assessment). SDV350808.

The first large-scale confrontation between the rebels and the royal army took place at Fenny Bridges, where the London-Exeter road crossed the River Otter about three miles west of Honiton, probably on Sunday 28th July. The traditional site of the battle is placed in Fenny Meadow on the Ordnance Survey mapping of 1854 and known locally as 'Bloody Meadow'. In this report the battlefield area has been defined widely to take in both the traditional site and that suggested here as more likely area of action. See report for full details.
Map object based on this source.


Ordnance Survey, 2013, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV350786.

Map object based on this source.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV17562Monograph: Hoskins, W. G.. 1954. A New Survey of England: Devon. A New Survey of England: Devon. A5 Hardback. 234,297.
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV336546Report - Assessment: Weddell, P. J.. 1989. A Preliminary Archaeological Assessment of the Preferred Route of the A30 Trunk Road Honiton-Exeter Improvement. Exeter Museums Archaeological Field Unit Report. 89.19. A4 Stapled + Digital. 8.
SDV337589Report - Assessment: Weddell, P. J.. 1991. Archaeological Assessment of the Published Route (preliminary) of the A30 Honiton-Exeter Improvement. Exeter Museums Archaeological Field Unit Report. 91.22. A4 Stapled + Digital. 24.
SDV338771Report - non-specific: Wessex Archaeology. 1998. A30 Honiton to Exeter Improvements, Devon 1996-8: Proposals for Archaeological Post-excavation: Part III. Wessex Archaeology Report. 42412.4. Unknown. 5.
SDV338788Report - Assessment: Exeter Archaeology. 2002. Archaeological Assessment of a Proposed Development at Feniton Mill, Feniton. Exeter Archaeology Report. 02.05. A4 Stapled + Digital. 3, 6.
SDV338790Article in Serial: Watson, W. H.. 1929. A Devonshire Village in the Olden Days. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 61. Unknown. 61.
SDV338807Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1953. SY19NW13. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV338808Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1975. SY19NW13. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV338858Worksheet: Goodyear, R. I.. 1990. Battle Site. Worksheet + Digital.
SDV350786Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2013. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital.
SDV350808Report - Assessment: Foard, G. + Hodgkins, A.. 2009. Battlefields of the Prayer Book Rebellion: An Archaeological Resource Assessment. University of Leeds. Digital. 10; figures 1-9.

Associated Monuments

MDV10109Related to: Battlefield, Clyst Heath and Clyst St Mary (Monument)
MDV62606Related to: Possible Site of Battle at Windmill Hill (Monument)
MDV12578Related to: Site of the Last Battle of the Prayer Book Rebellion (Monument)
MDV62035Related to: Stone commemmorating Prayer Book Rebellion, Fenny Meadow (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded


Date Last Edited:Jan 14 2013 3:15PM