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HER Number:MDV78059
Name:Chapel at The Livery Dole Almshouses, Exeter


Small 16th century chapel. Of Heavitree stone with a slate roof.


Grid Reference:SX 935 924
Map Sheet:SX99SW
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishExeter
Ecclesiastical ParishHEAVITREE

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Church of England HER: 4920
  • Old Listed Building Ref (II): 89212

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • CHAPEL (XV to XVI - 1401 AD to 1600 AD (Between))

Full description

Cresswell, B. F., 1908 - 1909, Exeter Churches, 47-49 (Article in Serial). SDV344772.

The chapel is referred to in 1439 as the chapel of St. Clarus. Built of red stone, with a western bell turret, it stands at the eas end of the Livery Dole almshouses. The wall was supported by strong buttresses. The tracery of the east window probably belongs to the original buildings. The side windows were probably inserted at the end of the 16th century when the almshouses were erected. Within, the chapel is plain, consisting of a nave and sanctuary with no division between them. On either side hang china plaques, one bearing the arms and quatrings of Denys, the other repeating the inscription which is placed outside the almshouses over the gate. The chapel was licensed for weddings from 1844-1846 when Heavitree church was closed for restoration. Other details: Plate.

Pevsner, N., 1952, The Buildings of England: South Devon, 163 (Monograph). SDV336217.

A small red chapel exists circa 1420-1430.

Orme, N., 1991, The Medieval Chapels of Heavitree, 121-130 (Article in Serial). SDV24915.

There is no mention of a chapel which can be identified with Livery Dole in the 1401 list of Heavitree chapels, or in the excrescence accounts and debt rolls between 1418 and 1592. Orme suggests that the chapel has been erroneously identified with St. Clarus and that the latter stood near St. Leonards Church. Robert Denys' will [1592] is the first documentary reference to the chapel at Livery Dole in which it states that he had set aside a plot of land on which to erect an almshouse and chapel but that the work was not yet completed. This implies that the chapel is indeed contemporary with the almshouses. The 16th century chapel may have been modelled upon existing medieval chapels in Exeter which explains its architectural style. Also materials from nearby redundant chapels such as St. Clairs, St. Clements and Mincinglanks, as well as the dissolved religious houses of Cowick, St. Nicholas and Polsloe etc, may have been reused in its construction.

Jones, A., 2008, Gallows in the Landscape. Execution Sites in Devon, 78 (Article in Serial). SDV344749.

Map object based on this Source.

English Heritage, 2010, Historic Houses Register (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV154869.

Small 16th century chapel of Heavitree stone with slate roof. Retains some original windows. Date listed: 18th June 1974.

Ordnance Survey, 2010, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV344030.

Map object based on this Source.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV154869List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: English Heritage. 2010. Historic Houses Register. Historic Houses Register. Website.
SDV24915Article in Serial: Orme, N.. 1991. The Medieval Chapels of Heavitree. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 49. Paperback Volume. 121-130.
SDV336217Monograph: Pevsner, N.. 1952. The Buildings of England: South Devon. The Buildings of England: South Devon. Paperback Volume. 163.
SDV344030Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2010. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey. Map (Digital).
SDV344749Article in Serial: Jones, A.. 2008. Gallows in the Landscape. Execution Sites in Devon. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 66. Paperback Volume. 78.
SDV344772Article in Serial: Cresswell, B. F.. 1908 - 1909. Exeter Churches. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 5.2. Unknown. 47-49.

Associated Monuments

MDV16370Related to: CHAPEL in the Parish of Exeter (Monument)
MDV55546Related to: CHAPEL in the Parish of Exeter (Monument)
MDV55547Related to: CHAPEL in the Parish of Exeter (Monument)
MDV41893Related to: Exeter, Livery Dole (Monument)
MDV15880Related to: Livery Dole Almshouses (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4770 - Assessment of Gallow Sites in Devon

Date Last Edited:Nov 24 2017 10:16AM