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HER Number:MDV19566
Name:Deerpark and Gardens at Powderham Castle


Large deerpark and gardens at Powderham Castle shown on 18th century maps and extended in the late 18th century


Grid Reference:SX 965 840
Map Sheet:SX98SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishKenton
Civil ParishStarcross
Ecclesiastical ParishPOWDERHAM

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: 447995
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX98SE/42
  • Old Registered Parks and Gardens Ref (II*)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • DEER PARK (XVIII to XXI - 1701 AD to 2009 AD (Between))

Full description

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, SX98SE 10 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV314508.

Devon Record Office, 1757, Map of Topsham Harbour, 2 (Record Office Collection). SDV314509.

A probable park pale is marked on a 1757 map of Topsham Harbour. Possibly obscured by course of railway. Appears to have a second, parallel, pale where it crosses the River Kenn.

Harding, 1867, 2nd S, 181 (Article in Serial). SDV314504.

Powderham Castle, Deerpark. During the late 18th century improvements to the castle, the deerpark was increased by some 50-100 acres, by the formation of a bank along the Exe which reclaimed some land.

Shirley, E. P., 1867, Some Account of English Deerparks, 91 (Monograph). SDV314505.

A fine park surrounded with walls. Extant in 1822 & 1867.

Unknown, 1963, Untitled Source, 18-21 (Article in Serial). SDV336424.

Articles also in Country Life 11th July 1963 pages 80-83, Country Life 18th July 1963 pages 140-2 & Country Life 4th April 1908 pages 486-92,

Griffith, F. M., 1982, Untitled Source (Site Visit). SDV314506.

Deerpark still extant and containing deer in 1982.

Whitaker, J., 1982, Untitled Source, 45 (Monograph). SDV7428.

Gallant, L., 1986, Deer Parks and Paddocks of England (Un-published). SDV656.

Deerpark of 280 acres surrounded by an iron railing fence in 19C according to Lysons, with circumference of 2 miles.

Devon Gardens Trust, 1987, Powderham (Reg/Local list of Historic Parks and Gdns). SDV336432.

The gardens & deerpark at Powderham Castle were developed in 18th century, with 19th century formal terraced gardens of 1ha. The ground at Powderham slopes down eastwards to the estuary of the River Exe, with virtually level ground for 600 meters east of the castle. Higher wooded ground. Powderham Old Plantation, with Powderham New Plantation extending further to northwest. Park and garden activity at Powderham uncertain before 18th century when the course of the River Kenn was canalised to allow drainage of land to south of the castle. Most of the woodland established in 18th century. Cedar avenue (with some limes) northward. Line of oaks to northeast. To the east boundary the railway was built. Present terraced gardens to east of the castle developed at the time of Fowler's remodelling between 1837 and 1848. Rectangular plan, divided by terraces falling eastward from, and centrally aligned on the castle. High retaining walls. The 19th century layout involved geometrical massed bedding, with columnar Irish yews. This scheme now much simplified, with borders a long terraces, and lawns to left and right of central path, with urn, sundial and topiary yew dolphins. Fine views.

Griffith, F. M., 1988, DAP/JY, 1-4 (Aerial Photograph). SDV314510.

Devon Gardens Trust, 2003, Powderham (Reg/Local list of Historic Parks and Gdns). SDV336419.

Upgraded to Grade II * in 2001.

Greener, C., 2013, Garden Women in Devon, 10 (Article in Serial). SDV358469.

The first references, found to date, of women being employed specifically as garden labourers in private gardens are detailed in Powderham estate records from 1714. They probably worked in the kitchen garden or the walled garden.

Pink, F., 2014-2015, South Devon Coast Rapid Coastal Zone Assessment Survey Desk-Based Assessment (Interpretation). SDV357736.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV314504Article in Serial: Harding. 1867. 2nd S. Transactions of the Exeter Diocese Architectural and Archaeological Society. 1. 181.
SDV314505Monograph: Shirley, E. P.. 1867. Some Account of English Deerparks. Some Account of English Deerparks. Unknown. 91.
SDV314506Site Visit: Griffith, F. M.. 1982. Not Applicable.
SDV314508Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. SX98SE 10. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV314509Record Office Collection: Devon Record Office. 1757. Map of Topsham Harbour. 1508M/Devon/Rivers. Map (Paper). 2.
SDV314510Aerial Photograph: Griffith, F. M.. 1988. DAP/JY. Devon Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). 1-4.
SDV336419Reg/Local list of Historic Parks and Gdns: Devon Gardens Trust. 2003. Powderham. Historic Parks and Gardens - Devon Register Review. Unknown.
SDV336424Article in Serial: Unknown. 1963. Country Life. A4 Magazine. 18-21.
SDV336432Reg/Local list of Historic Parks and Gdns: Devon Gardens Trust. 1987. Powderham. Historic Parks and Gardens - Register and Local List. Unknown.
SDV357736Interpretation: Pink, F.. 2014-2015. South Devon Coast Rapid Coastal Zone Assessment Survey Desk-Based Assessment. AC Archaeology Report. Digital.
Linked documents:1
SDV358469Article in Serial: Greener, C.. 2013. Garden Women in Devon. The Devon Gardens Trust Journal. 3. A4 Paperback + Digital. 10.
SDV656Un-published: Gallant, L.. 1986. Deer Parks and Paddocks of England. Deer Parks and Paddocks of England. Manuscript.
SDV7428Monograph: Whitaker, J.. 1982. A Descriptive List of the Deer Parks and Paddocks of England. Unknown. 45.

Associated Monuments

MDV10236Related to: Powderham Castle (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV3914 - DAP/JY
  • EDV3915 - Unnamed Event

Date Last Edited:May 9 2017 9:59AM