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HER Number:MDV7501
Name:Holy Well, Widecombe-in-the-Moor


Holy well in Widecombe-in-the-Moor known as the 'Saxon Well' but probably built in the 17th century


Grid Reference:SX 717 767
Map Sheet:SX77NW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishWidecombe in the Moor
Ecclesiastical ParishWIDECOMBE IN THE MOOR

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: SX77NW19
  • National Record of the Historic Environment: 445077
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX77NW/71
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II): 442043
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SX77NW19

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • HOLY WELL (Constructed, Post Roman to XVIII - 410 AD? (Between) to 1800 AD (Between))

Full description

Unknown, 1843, Widecombe in the Moor (Cartographic). SDV290272.

Field Number 549 shown as 'Well Meadow'on 19th century Tithe Map Apportionment.

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

Shown as 'W' on 19th century map.

Copeland, G. W., 1938, Seventh Report of the Plymouth and District Branch, 164 (Article in Serial). SDV343215.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1953, SX77NW19 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV349200.

Old well of uncertain age at the foot of the hill. The granite cover resembles a stone dog kennel inset at rear into a bank. Well is full of cold clear water and outer retaining wall is pierced by two holes which act as overflows. The front can be closed by a wooden door, the well is constructed of heavy granite flags and is further protected by its sloping roof consisting of two such flags placed to lean against each other and mortared together. Locally known as the "Saxon Well". Other details: Sketch and Photograph.

Brown, T., 1957, Holy and Notable Wells of Devon, 215 (Article in Serial). SDV304810.

There is a holy well at Widecombe, said to be Saxon, but which is a doubtful antiquity. It is associated with the healing of eye trouble and the tossing of pennies.

Beeson, M. M. R. + Masterman, M. C. H., 1979, An Archaeological Survey of Enclosed Land in Widecombe-In-The-Moor Parish, 304 (Report - Survey). SDV337078.

Site visited on 11th September 1979. Grass. Just over the hedge from this field, beside the road, is a granite alcove over a trough into which water from the field flows. Other details: Volume II.

Department of Environment, 1986, Widecombe in the Moor (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV289221.

Saxon well, about 25 metres west of the vicarage gate on the opposite side of the road. Well head, probably 17th century or earlier. Granite ashlar. Small structure about 1 1/2 metres high. Roofed with a series of granite lintels, projecting at each end and chamfered. Upon them rest two large slabs of granite forming a pitched roof, a triangular stone being placed at the apex to form a ridge. In the front is a small square opening having a 20th century plank door with ornamental iron hinges. Just below this are two small holes formerly containing outlet pipes discharging into a sunken trough.

National Monuments Record, 2012, 445077 (National Monuments Record Database). SDV349201.

Other details: SX77NW19.

Ordnance Survey, 2012, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV348725.

Well shown as 'W' on modern mapping.

English Heritage, 2012, National Heritage List for England (National Heritage List for England). SDV348729.

Saxon Well, about 25 metres west of the vicarage gate on the opposite side of the road was Listed on 23rd August 1955. Well head. Probably l7th century or earlier. Other details: LBS Number 442043.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV289221List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department of Environment. 1986. Widecombe in the Moor. Historic Houses Register. A4 Single Sheet.
SDV290272Cartographic: Unknown. 1843. Widecombe in the Moor. Tithe Map and Apportionment. Map (Paper).
SDV304810Article in Serial: Brown, T.. 1957. Holy and Notable Wells of Devon. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 89. A5 Hardback. 215.
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV337078Report - Survey: Beeson, M. M. R. + Masterman, M. C. H.. 1979. An Archaeological Survey of Enclosed Land in Widecombe-In-The-Moor Parish. Devon Committee for Rescue Archaeology Report. Vols I - V. A4 Comb Bound. 304.
SDV343215Article in Serial: Copeland, G. W.. 1938. Seventh Report of the Plymouth and District Branch. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 70. A5 Hardback. 164.
SDV348725Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2012. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey. Map (Digital). [Mapped feature: #102227 ]
SDV348729National Heritage List for England: English Heritage. 2012. National Heritage List for England. Website.
SDV349200Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1953. SX77NW19. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV349201National Monuments Record Database: National Monuments Record. 2012. 445077. National Monuments Record Database. Website.

Associated Monuments

MDV7460Related to: St Pancras Church, Widecombe-in-the-Moor (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:May 30 2022 8:50AM