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HER Number:MDV63225
Name:Garden at Shilston Barton, Modbury


Shilston Barton's designed landscape contains many formal features possibly dating from 1650-1750


Grid Reference:SX 673 535
Map Sheet:SX65SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishModbury
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishMODBURY

Protected Status

  • SHINE: Earthworks and features of landscaped garden at Shilstone Barton dating from the 17th to 19th century and sites of former orchards dating to the 19th century or earlier to the south at Croppin's Coombe

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX65SE/27/4

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • GARDEN (Early Medieval to XVIII - 1066 AD to 1800 AD (Between))

Full description

Devon Gardens Trust, 1999, Devon Local Register, 126 (Un-published). SDV170167.

Currie, C. K., 2000, Archaeological Recording of Garden Features at Shilston Barton (Report - Survey). SDV342848.

Shilston Barton's designed landscape contains many formal features possibly dating from 1650-1750. Water features are located to the south of the house with the main focus being a rare 'Water Theatre' or grotto. Other formal elements include three small ornamental ponds and a rustic cascade.

Currie, C. K., 2001, Water, water, every where!, 1 (Article in Serial). SDV342859.

The designed landscape at Shilston contains many formal features that might place it in the period 1650-1750. It is possible that there was some later alteration and evolution particularly in the 19th century when various features were rebuilt or modified. One of the main foci of the design is atripple arched building built over a series of springs at the head of the Shilston valley. The landscape also contained three small ponds with formal elements in their design. Between two of the ponds are the remains of a rustic cascade.

Gray, A., 2009, Devon Rural Archive. A New Research Resource, 33 (Article in Serial). SDV347400.

Shilstone has a remarkable and complex 18th century water garden.

Devon Gardens Trust, 2013, Devon Gazetteer of Parks and Gardens of Local Interest (Reg/Local list of Historic Parks and Gdns). SDV354335.

Clark, J., 2013, Shilston Barton (Un-published). SDV358181.

A cursory glance at the landscape could suggest that there is little of any interest to the garden historian. There is a lack of established planting and ornamental trees with exception of one Veteran Chestnut and several Evergreen Oaks of c 1800. However, the ornamental landscape at Shilston is extremely intriguing because of four surviving features. First, there is a series of terraces above the current house which may be linked with the medieval building. Second, a stone built rectangular kitchen garden has an ornamental tower and, more interestingly, an unusual raised walk along the length of the back south-west facing wall. The tower appears to have been built in the early nineteenth century but the walkway would have been a curious feature to build at that date. But the main area of interest lies with the series of three rectangular stone-sided ponds descending the valley. The history of these ponds is all the more interesting because the survival of the fourth principal garden feature: this is a three vaulted water chamber built into the hillside between the site of the medieval house and the first of the ponds. The chamber is extremely well built and must have been expensive to build in both its design and execution. Behind it is an older chamber built deeper into the hillside.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV170167Un-published: Devon Gardens Trust. 1999. Devon Local Register. Devon Local Register of Parks and Gardens of Local Historic Interest. A4 Stapled + Digital. 126.
SDV342848Report - Survey: Currie, C. K.. 2000. Archaeological Recording of Garden Features at Shilston Barton. CKC Archaeology Report. A4 Stapled + Digital.
SDV342859Article in Serial: Currie, C. K.. 2001. Water, water, every where!. Devon Archaeological Society Newsletter. 78. A4 Stapled. 1.
SDV347400Article in Serial: Gray, A.. 2009. Devon Rural Archive. A New Research Resource. The Devon Gardens Trust Journal. 2. A4 Stapled. 33.
SDV354335Reg/Local list of Historic Parks and Gdns: Devon Gardens Trust. 2013. Devon Gazetteer of Parks and Gardens of Local Interest. Historic Parks and Gardens - Register and Local List. Digital.
SDV358181Un-published: Clark, J.. 2013. Shilston Barton. Devon Local Register of Parks and Gardens of Local Historic Interest. Digital.

Associated Monuments

MDV5068Parent of: Cider Press Stone at Shilston Barton, Modbury (Monument)
MDV63164Parent of: Walled Garden at Shilston Barton, Modbury (Building)
MDV63165Parent of: Water Feature at Shilston Barton, Modbury (Monument)
MDV78697Part of: Shilston Barton, Modbury (Monument)
MDV63163Related to: Medieval Features at Shilston Barton, Modbury (Building)
MDV5067Related to: Shilston Barton Farmhouse, Modbury (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4544 - Excavation in the Gardens at Shilston Barton

Date Last Edited:Jul 15 2016 11:29AM