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HER Number:MDV38774
Name:Post Medieval Pottery Works in Barnstaple

Summary

Site of a post medieval pottery industry located between Castle Green and Tuly Street. Three 17th century pottery kilns were excavated on the site of Barnstaple Library car park. A large assemblage of pottery waste was also recovered. Clay pipe fragments found on the site ranged in date from 1600-1720.

Location

Grid Reference:SS 556 333
Map Sheet:SS53SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishBarnstaple
DistrictNorth Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishBARNSTAPLE

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SS53SE/431

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • POTTERY WORKS (XVI to XIX - 1600 AD to 1900 AD (Between))

Full description

Unknown, 15/08/1985, Buried Floor Found (Article in Serial). SDV351415.

A team of volunteers are investigating former gardens which were to the rear of houses facing Potters Lane. This area may contain large dumps of wast from the pottery kilns which were close to the site in the 17th century.


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

'Potter's Lane' shown on 19th century map running south from SS55603343 to SS55633337 with buildings between the grounds of 'Castle House' to the west and 'Tuly Street' to the east. A 'Pottery' is shown at SS55603340.


Timms, S. C., 1976, The Devon Urban Survey, 1976. First Draft, 73, 76 (Report - Survey). SDV341346.

Excavations within the castle bailey recovered medieval and post medieval pottery including 17th century material from the rubbish deposits of the pottery located in Potters Lane.


Grant, A., 1983, Barnstaple Local Public Inquiry. Devon Archaeological Statement. Appendix 7 (Un-published). SDV357967.

Includes map showing the location of the Barnstaple Castle potteries in the 17th century.


Grant, A. + Jemmett, D., 1985, Pipes and Pipemaking in Barnstaple, Devon, 439-553 (Article in Serial). SDV354868.

Sufficient finds of clay tobacco pipes from excavations on the site of a 17th century pottery near the castle suggest that they were made in this area. A pipe based stamped with the initials 'P. T.' has been linked to Peter Takell who documentary evidence indicates was manufacturing clay pipes in the area in the earlier part of the 17th century. It is suggested that pipemaking was becoming an established independent craft by the mid 17th century, although some manufacturers combined it with another trade.


North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit, 1986, An Excavation at North Devon Area Library Site, Barnstaple; Summary Report (Report - Excavation). SDV76038.


Timms, S., 1987, The Archaeology of North Devon Towns, 5 (Un-published). SDV354573.


North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit, 1989, Archaeology in North Devon 1989, 21-3 (Report - non-specific). SDV342315.


North Devon District Council, 1989, Barnstaple Pottery Week and Kiln Build (Leaflet). SDV356885.

The castle was out of use by the 17th century and the lands around it were being used for other purposes. The castle ditches were let out for industrial purposes, mainly for pottery production. Many kilns and workshops were established along Potters Lane which became a major production site for the North Devon Pottery export trade. The leaflet outlines events to be held during Barnstaple Pottery Week including the construction and firing of a full size replica 17th century kiln.


North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit, 1990, Archaeology in Barnstaple: 1984-90, 14-5 (Report - non-specific). SDV342524.

A pottery kiln dated to 1230-1290 was set into the lower fills of an irregular linear ditch which ran parallel to the present course of Tuly Street and circa 4 metres to the west. Three 17th century pottery kilns were excavated beneath Barnstaple Library car park. The kilns were of a basic design of two parallel arched fireboxes leading to a roughly circular ware chamber.


Lovatt, A. M., 1990, Excavations within a Medieval Town: North West Barnstaple 1985-1988, 12 (Report - Excavation). SDV64370.

Substantial remains of 17th century pottery kilns with large amounts of associated waste were excavated between 1986 and 1987. A broad flat bottomed ditch was also exposed which may have been associated with the castle's outer bailey ditch.


Lovatt, A. M., 1990, The Excavation of Three Post-Medieval Pottery Kilns at Barnstaple 1986-1987 (Report - Excavation). SDV319605.

Site of a Post Medieval pottery industry located between Castle Green and Tuly Street in Barnstaple. Three pottery kilns and associated pits were excavated dating from the early 17th to the early 19th century. The kilns are simple updraught kilns used from the 14th century. A large assemblage of pottery waste was recovered from the site representing typical North Devon ware with some plain and sgraffitto decorated slipped finewares. Coarse kiln furniture was also represented in the waste. Clay pipes fragments recovered ranged in date from 1600-1720.


North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit, 1991, North Devon Archaeological Site Code Index, Site 121 (Report - non-specific). SDV63429.

Trench in the former pottery producing area of Tuly Street and the site of the library observed and recorded in 1987. Previous disturbance noted.


Exeter Archaeology, 2003, Barnstaple Castle Car Park Scheme: Phase 1: Archaeological Assessment, 13, Fig. 11 (Report - Assessment). SDV319631.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV319605Report - Excavation: Lovatt, A. M.. 1990. The Excavation of Three Post-Medieval Pottery Kilns at Barnstaple 1986-1987. North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit Report. A4 Stapled + Digital.
SDV319631Report - Assessment: Exeter Archaeology. 2003. Barnstaple Castle Car Park Scheme: Phase 1: Archaeological Assessment. Exeter Archaeology Report. 03.62. A4 Stapled + Digital. 13, Fig. 11.
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV341346Report - Survey: Timms, S. C.. 1976. The Devon Urban Survey, 1976. First Draft. Devon Committee for Rescue Archaeology Report. A4 Unbound + Digital. 73, 76.
SDV342315Report - non-specific: North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit. 1989. Archaeology in North Devon 1989. North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit Report. A4 Stapled + Digital. 21-3.
SDV342524Report - non-specific: North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit. 1990. Archaeology in Barnstaple: 1984-90. North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit Report. A4 Stapled + Digital. 14-5. [Mapped feature: #22859 ]
SDV351415Article in Serial: Unknown. 15/08/1985. Buried Floor Found. North Devon Journal. Photocopy.
SDV354573Un-published: Timms, S.. 1987. The Archaeology of North Devon Towns. A4 Stapled + Digital. 5.
SDV354868Article in Serial: Grant, A. + Jemmett, D.. 1985. Pipes and Pipemaking in Barnstaple, Devon. The Archaeology of the Clay Tobacco Pipe IX: More Pipes From the Midlands and Southern England. BAR British Series 146. A4 Stapled + Digital. 439-553.
SDV356885Leaflet: North Devon District Council. 1989. Barnstaple Pottery Week and Kiln Build. Leaflet + Digital.
SDV357967Un-published: Grant, A.. 1983. Barnstaple Local Public Inquiry. Devon Archaeological Statement. Appendix 7. A4 Stapled + Digital.
SDV63429Report - non-specific: North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit. 1991. North Devon Archaeological Site Code Index. North Devon District Council Report. A4 Stapled + Digital. Site 121.
SDV64370Report - Excavation: Lovatt, A. M.. 1990. Excavations within a Medieval Town: North West Barnstaple 1985-1988. North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit Report. A4 Grip Bound + Digital. 12.
SDV76038Report - Excavation: North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit. 1986. An Excavation at North Devon Area Library Site, Barnstaple; Summary Report. North Devon District Council Rescue Archaeology Unit Report. A4 Stapled + Digital.

Associated Monuments

MDV50123Parent of: Pottery Kiln No. 1, Tuly Street, Barnstaple (Monument)
MDV58911Parent of: Pottery Kiln No. 2, Tuly Street, Barnstaple (Monument)
MDV58910Parent of: Pottery Kiln No. 3, Tuly Street, Barnstaple (Monument)
MDV38715Related to: 17th century pottery from North Walk, Barnstaple (Find Spot)
MDV863Related to: Dornat's Factory, formerly a Workhouse, Tuly Street, Barnstaple (Building)
MDV19245Related to: Potters Quay, Barnstaple (Monument)
MDV72925Related to: Pottery from the River Taw, Barnstaple (Find Spot)
MDV14293Related to: Pottery Kiln at Rolles Quay, Barnstaple (Monument)
MDV15273Related to: Rendles Pottery, North Walk, Barnstaple (Building)
MDV58909Related to: Tuly Street, Barnstaple (Monument)
MDV107246Related to: Waste Dumps from North Walk Pottery, Barnstaple (Find Spot)

Associated Finds

  • FDV1356 - PIPE (SMOKING) (XVI to XVIII - 1600 AD to 1800 AD)
  • FDV1354 - POT (XVI to XVIII - 1600 AD to 1800 AD)
  • FDV1355 - WASTER (XVI to XVIII - 1600 AD to 1800 AD)
  • FDV1357 - GLASS VESSEL (XVII to XVIII - 1700 AD to 1750 AD)

Associated Events

  • EDV1360 - Excavations within a Medieval Town: North West Barnstaple 1985-1988
  • EDV1377 - Excavation of Post-Medieval Pottery Kilns at Barnstaple
  • EDV1378 - Barnstaple Castle Car Park Scheme Archaeological Assessment

Date Last Edited:Mar 13 2015 4:13PM