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HER Number:MDV118262
Name:The Bell Inn, Moretonhampstead

Summary

The building may have originally been 16th century cottages, the first record of an inn on this site is from 1799. Almost completely destroyed by fire in 1845, in the 19th century it was a meeting place for wrestling matches. There is an ancient oak beam spanning the modern bar once bore carvings of the King's head and these are said to have been mutilated by the Roundheads in the Civil War. Discovered and restored in the 21st century, the walls of the 'Painted Room' upstairs are attributed to French prisoners of war who were in Moretonhampstead in the early 1800s.

Location

Grid Reference:SX 753 860
Map Sheet:SX78NE
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishMoretonhampstead
DistrictTeignbridge
Ecclesiastical ParishMORETONHAMPSTEAD

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses: none recorded

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • COTTAGE NON SPECIFIC? (Constructed, XV to XVI - 1500 AD to 1599 AD (Between))
  • PUBLIC HOUSE (XVIII to XIX - 1799 AD to 1840 AD (Between))

Full description

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

Building is depicted on the Tithe Map.


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

Public House is depicted on the late 19th century historic map.


Quick, T., 1992, Dartmoor Inns, 8-9 (Monograph). SDV359976.

The building may have originally been 16th century cottages, the first record of an inn on this site is from 1799. There have been suggestions that it may at one time have been used as a church, but there is no evidence. The inn consists of the Haytor bar and the Colwell bar, and supporting the ceiling between the two rooms is an interestingly carved oak beam. It's origin is unknown but it is reported to date from the 13th century; there used to be a carving of a king's head in the centre of it, but this was destroyed sometime in the past. Almost completely destroyed by fire in 1845, in the 19th century it was a meeting place for wrestling matches.


Mortimer, I., 2012, Gazetteer of Moretonhampstead Parish, 5 (Website). SDV357796.

BELL INN, THE. An old inn - it is said that the ancient oak beam spanning the modern bar once bore carvings of the King's head and that these were mutilated by the Roundheads in the Civil War. Of even greater interest is the 'Painted Room' upstairs. Recently uncovered and restored, the walls of the room are painted with Etruscan-style panels separated by heraldic devices. This work has been attributed to French prisoners of war who were in Moreton in the early 1800s. Certainly the Bell boasted a concert room in 1800, Treleaven writing that 'a ball was held in the concert room, where the young Ladies and Gentlemen made a very neat and decent appearance, and parted about 12 o'clock highly pleased with their evening's entertainment'. It is quite likely that this was the painted room.
In 1801 the Bell was one of the inns providing refreshment at the Races on Mardon Down, and it was often used for meetings of local societies. In the 1890s St. Annes Well Brewery in Exeter took over the Inn - see their name on the windows. In 1935 it was the first inn to be connected to electricity.


Ordnance Survey, 2017, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV359962.

Public House is depicted on the modern mapping.

Sources / Further Reading

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.
SDV357796Website: Mortimer, I.. 2012. Gazetteer of Moretonhampstead Parish. http://www.moretonhampstead.org.uk/uploads/moreton_gazetteer.pdf. Website. 5.
SDV359962Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2017. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #77542 ]
SDV359976Monograph: Quick, T.. 1992. Dartmoor Inns. Dartmoor Inns. Paperback Volume. 8-9.

Associated Monuments

MDV40417Related to: 1 and 1a The Square, Moretonhampstead (Building)
MDV40467Related to: 4 The Square, Moretonhampstead (Building)
MDV40273Related to: 6 Cross Street, Moretonhampstead (Building)
MDV79739Related to: Bowring Library, Moretonhampstead (Building)
MDV40261Related to: Site of 2, 4, 6 Ford Street, Moretonhampstead (Building)
MDV103116Related to: War Memorial adjacent to the Bowring Library, Moretonhampstead (Monument)
MDV40416Related to: White Hart Hotel, Moretonhampstead (Building)
MDV40414Related to: White Horse Inn, Moretonhampstead (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded


Date Last Edited:May 4 2018 12:19PM