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HER Number:MDV42607
Name:Great Sluice, Seaton Marshes


The Great Sluice was built in 1669-1672 in order to facilitate the drainage of Seaton Marshes. Nothing of the work now remains.


Grid Reference:SY 252 900
Map Sheet:SY29SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishAxmouth
DistrictEast Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishBEER AND SEATON

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SY29SE/186

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • SLUICE GATE (XVII to XIX - 1601 AD to 1900 AD (Between))

Full description

Parkinson, M., 1985, The Axe Estuary and its Marshes, 37, 53, 58 (Article in Serial). SDV122290.

The Great Sluice was built at the time of modifications to the Willoughby reclamation bank in 1669-72 in order to facilitate drainage of the south-east corner of Seaton Marshes. It controlled the mouth of a pre-existing tidal creek. It was probably a hatch and groove sluice involving much masonry, carpentry and ironwork. The gates were replaced by tidal flaps in 1851-3 and further modified by the building of the railway in 1868. Nothing of this work remains but the tidal creek into which the sluice emptied can still be seen and it had to be spanned by an extra arch when Axmouth Bridge was built in 1877.

Griffith, F. M., 1988, Devon's Past. An Aerial View, 52-53 (Monograph). SDV64198.

Exeter Archaeology, 2003-2004, East Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Archaeological Survey, Site No. 1480 (Archive - Survey). SDV351568.

'Willoughby Embankment' or 'Eastern Bank' built by John Willoughby Lord of Manor of Seaton in c. 1660-1661 in order to reclaim Seaton Marshes. Clay core faced with stone and piles. Bank extends north from c. SY 2533 9140 following parish boundary and then south bank of Stafford Brook westward. Sluicegates constructed at SY 253 918, SY 252 906, SY 252 903 and SY 252 900. Much of bank since obscured by railway.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV122290Article in Serial: Parkinson, M.. 1985. The Axe Estuary and its Marshes. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 117. A5 Paperback. 37, 53, 58. [Mapped feature: #25451 ]
SDV351568Archive - Survey: Exeter Archaeology. 2003-2004. East Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Archaeological Survey. East Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Archaeological Survey. Digital + Mixed Archive Material. Site No. 1480.
SDV64198Monograph: Griffith, F. M.. 1988. Devon's Past. An Aerial View. Devon's Past. An Aerial View. Paperback Volume. 52-53.

Associated Monuments

MDV11400Related to: Axmouth Bridge (Building)
MDV42606Related to: Broad Sluice, Seaton Marshes (Monument)
MDV22531Related to: Railway at Seaton (Monument)
MDV42605Related to: SLUICE GATE in the Parish of Axmouth, Seaton (Monument)
MDV42604Related to: SLUICE GATE in the Parish of Colyton (Monument)
MDV42602Related to: Willoughby Embankment at Seaton Marshes (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Jan 2 2018 1:10PM