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HER Number:MDV796
Name:Chapel of St. Nicholas, Barnstaple

Summary

Site of a medieval chapel later known as Kay or Quay Hall and used as a market. Demolished in 1852.

Location

Grid Reference:SS 557 331
Map Sheet:SS53SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishBarnstaple
DistrictNorth Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishBARNSTAPLE

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SS53SE/112
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SS53SE22

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • CHAPEL (Early Medieval to XIX - 1066 AD to 1852 AD (Between))

Full description

Wood, J., 1843, Plan of the Town of Barnstaple from Actual Survey (Cartographic). SDV91852.

Quay Hall shown on town plan of 1843.


Chanter, J. R., 1879, Vestiges of an Early Guild of St Nicholas at Barnstaple, 193, 196, 198-199 (Article in Serial). SDV342356.

Chapel of St. Nicholas, the property of the Guild of St. Nicholas. A deed of 1329 refers to a rent charge of twenty denarii to the 'keepers or wardens of the chantry of the fraternity of St. Mary and St. Nicholas near the Strand' and in 1387, a rent of twelve pence is reserved annually 'to the Chapel of St. Nicholas near the Strand in Barum'. The guild which was in existence during the reign of Edward I was disbanded in 1549. After the Reformation the chapel and guild hall became the property of the Corporation. A conveyance of 1584 descibes 'the scite of the late chapel of St. Nicholas, and a building called the Kay Hall'. The chapel was located over the West or Water Gate across Cross Street. Kay Hall was divided into two aisles by Norman arches supported on a massive pier. There were other apartments attached to the old chapel including one called the Guard Room. The building appears to have been used as a market and subsequently as a warehouse until its demolition in 1852.


Timms, S. C., 1976, The Devon Urban Survey, 1976. First Draft, 71 (Report - Survey). SDV341346.


Exeter Archaeology, 1997, North Devon District Council Barnstaple Quay Project: Archaeological Assessment, 2 (Report - Assessment). SDV73005.

St Nicholas' chapel was almost square in plan. It was acquired by the crown following the dissolution of the chantries and sold to merchants William Fountayne and Richard Mayne in 1550 and later that year to the town, and converted to Quay Hall.


Exeter Archaeology, 1998, North Devon District Council Barnstaple Quay Project: Archaeological Assessment and Evaluation (Report - Evaluation). SDV85921.


Exeter Archaeology, 2001, Archaeological Assessment and Building Recording at Commercial Road, Barnstaple, 3, 9, Fig. 2 (Report - Assessment). SDV73888.

The Chapel of St. Nicholas is believed to have dated from the 13th century. It functioned as the hall of the Guild of St. Nicholas which may have originated in Saxon times. It was eventually converted into Quay Hall and used as a warehouse for imported goods.


Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, Unknown, SS53SE22 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV350738.

Site visits 15/10/1953. The Borough surveyor related that during road excavations the foundations of the chapel were observed. The area is now occupied by a modern road. No visible remains. An old print of the chapel shows that it had a spire.
Site visit 6th April 1976. No change.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV341346Report - Survey: Timms, S. C.. 1976. The Devon Urban Survey, 1976. First Draft. Devon Committee for Rescue Archaeology Report. A4 Unbound + Digital. 71.
SDV342356Article in Serial: Chanter, J. R.. 1879. Vestiges of an Early Guild of St Nicholas at Barnstaple. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 11. A5 Hardback. 193, 196, 198-199.
SDV350738Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. Unknown. SS53SE22. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV73005Report - Assessment: Exeter Archaeology. 1997. North Devon District Council Barnstaple Quay Project: Archaeological Assessment. Exeter Archaeology Report. 97.80. A4 Stapled + Digital. 2. [Mapped feature: #106402 ]
SDV73888Report - Assessment: Exeter Archaeology. 2001. Archaeological Assessment and Building Recording at Commercial Road, Barnstaple. Exeter Archaeology Report. 01.28. A4 Stapled + Digital. 3, 9, Fig. 2.
SDV85921Report - Evaluation: Exeter Archaeology. 1998. North Devon District Council Barnstaple Quay Project: Archaeological Assessment and Evaluation. Exeter Archaeology Report. 98.44. A4 stapled + Digital.
SDV91852Cartographic: Wood, J.. 1843. Plan of the Town of Barnstaple from Actual Survey. Unknown.

Associated Monuments

MDV12497Related to: Medieval West Gate, Barnstaple (Building)
MDV63402Related to: Prison adjacent to St. Nicholas Chapel, Barnstaple (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded


Date Last Edited:Jun 18 2014 9:36AM