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HER Number:MDV8361
Name:Chapel at Manor Farm, Stoke Fleming


Site of manor house or chapel at Manor Farm, described circa 1750 as the remains of an old chapel and oratory which had long since been converted to a dwelling house. No above-ground remains of the building survive.


Grid Reference:SX 861 484
Map Sheet:SX84NE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishStoke Fleming
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishSTOKE FLEMING

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: 445849
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX84NE/2/1
  • Old SAM County Ref: 903

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • CHAPEL (XIII - 1201 AD to 1300 AD (Between))

Full description

Scott-Tucker, J. J. (Maj.), Untitled Source (Monograph). SDV336391.

Dean Milles, 1850, Untitled Source (Monograph). SDV336390.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1953, SX84NE1 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV336383.

Round pillar with ornamental top of sandstone built into wall of shed and some cut stones said to be the only remains of the house now existing. Neither pillar nor stones are visible from outside. Remains of manor house. Other details: Plan.

White, W., 1968, Reprint of History, Gazetteer and Directory of Devonshire (Monograph). SDV323585.

Chapel on Manor Farm (also described as remains of manor house). In a garden near the church are some remains of the ancient Anglo-Norman manor house consisting of three arches of red sandstone and some of its other remains are seen in the columns and capitals worked up in neighbouring buildings.

Department of Environment, 1971, Site of Chapel at Manor Farm (Schedule Document). SDV336386.

Site of chapel on Manor Farm. A column with a broken scalloped capital standing about 2.4m high has been incorporated in a now derelict farmshed. Another column was removed recently. They form part of the aisle arcade of a Norman church or chapel probably associated with the manor held by Richard the Fleming in the 12th century. A description by Jeremiah Milles, Precenter of Exeter Cathedral c.1750, reads, 'I observed in ye village about halfway between ye parsonage and ye church the remains of an old chapel and oratory which has long since been converted into a dwelling house. The building as far as I could judge by its remains was about 15 paces long. It consisted probably of a nave and two aisles which were divided by two large round pillars about 7 feet high and 2 feet in diameter with very ancient square capitals supporting 3 painted arches of hewn stone. The nave was 6 paces broad, I could not produce ye last information about ye use or original of ye building'. The standing remains and site are in danger should the farmyard be reorganized as has been suggested locally. Other details: Monument 903.

Robinson, 1983, Site of Chapel at Manor Farm (Site Visit). SDV336387.

DoE Field Monument Warden visit.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1986, Site of Chapel at Manor Farm (Site Visit). SDV336388.

Evaluation of this monument is difficult. Not only are the ascriptions 'Manor House' and chapel confused but the details given in 1951 and 1971 cannot be reconciled with current observations, and it is unlikely that the remains were 'in situ'. There is no pillar and no capital in the yard or any of the farm buildings. The farmer had a vague recollection of a pillar but nothing now remains. The pillars were probably not of blocks but the arches between them were, according to White's Directory, and it is these blocks which occur in the shed and the barn on the east side of the yard. All are of red sandstone, similar to the blocks used in the nave arches of the parish church. Twenty three form window arches in the barn, four are built into the south west corner of the shed, with another two on the ground, and one is in the outer face of the south wall of the yard. They are about 8 inches square and 1 foot long, some slightly segmented. If White's Directory is correct, one of the 1841 barns, perhaps the eastern one, was still rather as Dean Milles saw it in 1750, but there is now nothing above ground that warrants a continuation of the scheduling order.

Exeter Archaeology, 1996, Land to the Rear of Stoke Farm, Stoke Fleming. Archaeological Assessment, 3 (Report - Assessment). SDV336389.

No trace of column or capital found within existing fabric of standing barns or within the other ruined walls around the site. Local inhabitants can recall the location of the structures and appear to have seen them within living memory. Location said to be about midway between Sweets Cottages and the barn fronting onto Rectory Lane. The area has been cleared in recent years. Although documentary references are confused, it seems beyond doubt that a large, high status building of presumably Norman date once existed on this site but whether ecclesiastical or secular, is unclear. It appears that the final above-ground remains of the building were removed around the time that the site was actually scheduled.

Pink, F., 2014-2015, South Devon Coast Rapid Coastal Zone Assessment Survey Desk-Based Assessment (Interpretation). SDV357736.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV323585Monograph: White, W.. 1968. Reprint of History, Gazetteer and Directory of Devonshire. White's 1850 Devon. Hardback Volume.
SDV336383Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1953. SX84NE1. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV336386Schedule Document: Department of Environment. 1971. Site of Chapel at Manor Farm. The Schedule of Monuments. Foolscap.
SDV336387Site Visit: Robinson. 1983. Site of Chapel at Manor Farm. Field Monument Warden Visit. Not Applicable.
SDV336388Site Visit: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1986. Site of Chapel at Manor Farm. Not applicable. Unknown.
SDV336389Report - Assessment: Exeter Archaeology. 1996. Land to the Rear of Stoke Farm, Stoke Fleming. Archaeological Assessment. Exeter Archaeology Report. 96.53. A4 Stapled + Digital. 3.
SDV336390Monograph: Dean Milles. 1850. Parochial History of Devonshire. Manuscript.
SDV336391Monograph: Scott-Tucker, J. J. (Maj.). Parish of Stoke Fleming. Unknown.
SDV357736Interpretation: Pink, F.. 2014-2015. South Devon Coast Rapid Coastal Zone Assessment Survey Desk-Based Assessment. AC Archaeology Report. Digital.
Linked documents:1

Associated Monuments

MDV8360Related to: Domesday Manor of Stoc (Monument)
MDV59632Related to: FARMSTEAD in the Parish of Stoke Fleming (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV3901 - Unnamed Event
  • EDV3902 - FMW Visit
  • EDV3903 - Unnamed Event
  • EDV3904 - Unnamed Event

Date Last Edited:Mar 20 2015 2:17PM