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HER Number:MDV16235
Name:Week Farm, Milton Abbot


Week Farm once formed part of a larger settlement. The Tithe Map shows the rather haphazard arrangements of dwellings and farm buildings that existed in the early 19th century, including a possible chapel. The farm, formerly part of the Duke of Bedford's Devon estate, was completely remodelled in the 1840s. The farm buildings, form 3 ranges which, together with the farm house, define an almost square yard in which there are 2 further buildings, including a dung house. In the northern range, a waterwheel formerly powered a pair of millstones and a threshing machine.


Grid Reference:SX 451 811
Map Sheet:SX48SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishMilton Abbot
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishMILTON ABBOT

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX48SE/28
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • FARMSTEAD (Unknown date)

Full description

Reichel, O. J., 1914, The Hundred of Tavistock in Early Times, 224,225,230,237 (Article in Serial). SDV8646.

Week, formerly Wick Dabernon. This farm may represent a survival of the medieval manor of Wyk, which is listed in 12th and 13th century documents relating to Tavistock Abbey. At the time of the Domesday Book, it was not a separate manor but formed part of Tavistock, held by the Abbot.

Alexander, J. J., 1938 - 1939, Medieval Altars in Tavistock Church, 16 (Article in Serial). SDV336076.

One of three estates given in the 14th century to the Abbot of Tavistock by John Dabernon. The others were Ogbear and Hasworthy.

Alexander, J. J., 1939, Tavistock in the Thirteenth Century, 226-227 (Article in Serial). SDV247631.

Appears in 13th century list of Hundred jurors.

Department of Environment, 1985, Milton Abbot (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV339694.

Farmbuildings forming the farmyard to the north of Week farmhouse. Probably 1865 (datestone on Week Cottage) and built for the Duke of Bedford. Stone rubble with greenstone dressings and slate roofs gabled at ends. A complete planned farmyard organised round a central dunghouse. The power source is an overshot water wheel. The west range consists of a shippon with 5 entrances under cut stone arches with a cartshed adjoining at the south end with 4 entrances between ashlar stone piers. The north range consists of a single-storey calf-house with a gable end entrance and ventilation slits on the sides adjoining a 2-storey building containing a threshing barn with loft over and a rear granary adjacent to the water wheel. The east range is probably a fattening house with lofts over and is built into the slope of the land to allow direct entrance to the lofts at the rear. The south range consists of a small single-storey block with a small yard in front, said to have been used for housing dogs, and a larger single-storey building, also with a walled yard. In the centre of the yard is a dung house with a roof hipped at ends and, linked to the east range by a covered roof, a fattening shed with a roof hipped at ends. The leat is carried to the wheel in a timber trough carried on brick piers. The farmyard is very complete with a number of characteristic Bedford Estate features including a timber lining to most of the slate roofs. Week is the most complete C19 Bedford Estate farmyard in the parish. The 7th Duke of Bedford was a "devoted improver" (Spring) of the farms on theTavistock Estate and his policies and practices are described in David Spring, The English Landed Estate in the Nineteenth Century (1963). Other details: LBS No 92455.

Griffith, F. M., 1986, DAP/HN, 10-11 (Aerial Photograph). SDV339693.

Earthworks in the field immediately west of the present farm recorded from the air may indicate a shrunken settlement.

Wade Martins, S. + Lake, J. + Hawkins, B., 1997, Model Farmsteads: Thematic Survey, 12 (Report - Survey). SDV337360.

Bodman, M., 1998, Water-Powered Sites in Devon, 28 (Report - non-specific). SDV305931.

Other details: No 41.

Wade-Martins, S., 1999, Thematic Survey of Planned and Model Farms: Devon, 14 (Un-published). SDV17916.

Planned farm dated 1861. Part of Duke of Bedford's estate. Arranged around a central dunghouse. Powered by waterwheel. Most complete farm in the parish. Has planning permission for conversion.

Watts, M., 2002, Week Farm, Milton Abbot, Devon, 1-6, 23-4 (Report - Survey). SDV339695.

Place name Week is derived from a personal name. There are early references to members of the de la Wike family in the Assize Rolls in 13th century. Given to Tavistock Abbey in 1352. Included in land of Tavistock Abbey granted to John, Lord Russell after dissolution in 1540. The farm once formed part of a larger settlement. Earthworks in field immediately to west were recorded from air in 1986. These are also visible on the ground. The Tithe map shows a number of small fields to the north and west, one of which is named Chapel Orchard and the small building indicated on the map may have been the chapel. The Tithe Map clearly shows the rather haphazard arrangement of dwellings and farm buildings that existed on the site in the earlier 19th century. In 1817 Week Barton comprised 'a Dwelling House, Barn, Stable, Shippen &c' which are described as old with some of them out of repair. A proposal to copmpletely rebuild the farm was put forward to the Duke of Bedford in 1841. The condition of the original buildings are summarised in a report of 1842 as being mostly of cob and thatch and 'scattered over a large space'. They are described as being in a ruinous state and the report comments on the 'utter impossibility of repairing them'. Work on the new farm appears to have commenced in 1842 and was largely completed by 1844 (some 20 years earlier than originally thought). It is described in sale particulars for 1911 as a 'very desirable and compact Stock Farm'. The buildings, described as mostly stone-built and slated comprised 'Barn, Straw House, Root Store and Chaff House, Water Wheel-house, Mill Room, Granary, Wool Room, Shippens for about 19 cattle, Hay Loft, Bull's Box, 2 Cow Calving Boxes, 6-stall Stable with Loft over, 5-penned piggery, Covered Dung Shed, Poultry House, Yearlings' Houses for about 22, 5-bayed Cart Shed, Coach-house and Tool Shed, Manure or Hay House, new Sheep's House with galvanised roof, and old Thatch Cart Shed'. The layout of the farm shown on the 1906 25inch Ordnance Survey map appears to represent quite closely the farm as rebuilt in the 1840s and described in 1911. Although some buildings have subsequently been demolished the remainder of the 1840s buildings are still standing. The farm buildings form 3 ranges, west, north and east which, with the farmhouse to the south, define an almost square central yard in which are 2 further buildings. The yard can be entered either at the south west corner, to the west of the house where there were formerly more buildings, or at the north west corner. The present yard areas are now surfaced with mass concrete. The east range takes advantage of the natural slope of the site, being accessible from a track at first floor level. The buildings are generally constructed of randomly coursed stone with Hurdwick stone and granite dressings. An interesting feature in many of the pine roof trusses is the use of vertical iron tie rods. These are threaded into purpose-made iron castings, which form connectors at the apexes of the trusses and are bolted through the tie beams. These castings were probably supplied by one of the Tavistock iron foundries, perhaps by Nicholls & Williams who were paid for cast iron work in March 1843. The roofs of all the surviving buildings were clad with slate which, according to the account books, appear to have come from the Delabole quarry in Cornwall. By the 1850s slate was also supplied to the Bedford estate from the Mill Hill quarry near Tavistock, so later repairs may have used more local slates.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV17916Un-published: Wade-Martins, S.. 1999. Thematic Survey of Planned and Model Farms: Devon. Thematic Survey of Planned and Model Farms: Devon. A4 Stapled. 14.
SDV247631Article in Serial: Alexander, J. J.. 1939. Tavistock in the Thirteenth Century. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 71. A5 Hardback. 226-227.
SDV305931Report - non-specific: Bodman, M.. 1998. Water-Powered Sites in Devon. A4 Spiral Bound. 28.
SDV336076Article in Serial: Alexander, J. J.. 1938 - 1939. Medieval Altars in Tavistock Church. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 20. Unknown. 16.
SDV337360Report - Survey: Wade Martins, S. + Lake, J. + Hawkins, B.. 1997. Model Farmsteads: Thematic Survey. English Heritage Report. Digital + A4. 12.
SDV339693Aerial Photograph: Griffith, F. M.. 1986. DAP/HN. Devon Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). 10-11.
SDV339694List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department of Environment. 1985. Milton Abbot. Historic Houses Register. Website.
SDV339695Report - Survey: Watts, M.. 2002. Week Farm, Milton Abbot, Devon. 122/2002. A4 Stapled + Digital. 1-6, 23-4.
SDV8646Article in Serial: Reichel, O. J.. 1914. The Hundred of Tavistock in Early Times. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 46. A5 Hardback. 224,225,230,237.

Associated Monuments

MDV74065Parent of: Barn, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74062Parent of: Cart Shed, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74219Parent of: Cart shed, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Monument)
MDV74064Parent of: Cow Shed, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74072Parent of: Cowshed, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74070Parent of: Dung Shed, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74066Parent of: Mill Room, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74074Parent of: Outbuilding, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74075Parent of: Outbuilding, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74076Parent of: Sheep shed, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Monument)
MDV74063Parent of: Shippon, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74061Parent of: Site of Chapel, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Monument)
MDV74061Related to: Site of Chapel, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Monument)
MDV74220Parent of: Site of outbuilding, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Monument)
MDV74073Parent of: Stables, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74071Parent of: Stock shed, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74068Parent of: Threshing Barn, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Building)
MDV74067Parent of: Waterwheel, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Park/Garden)
MDV74077Related to: Earthworks in field to west of Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Monument)
MDV74061Parent of: Site of Chapel, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Monument)
MDV74061Related to: Site of Chapel, Week Farm, Milton Abbot (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4328 - Week Farm, Milton Abbot

Date Last Edited:Jan 10 2008 10:08AM