^ Home
< Back
? Search
Print this page




Devon County

Devonshire Rgt.

Directory Listings





Parish Records




War Memorials




The parish church of Berrynarbor

The parish church of Berrynarbor

©Richard J. Brine


Berrynarbor, a parish and pleasant village surrounded by beautiful woodland scenery, is o n an eminence near the sea-coast, overlooking Watermouth Cove, 3 miles east of Ilfracombe Railway Station. It is in the Barnstaple Union and county court district, Braunton petty sessional division, Ilfracombe polling district of North Devon, Braunton hundred, Barnstaple archdeaconry and Sherwell rural deanery. It had 751 inhabitants (392 males, 350 females) in 1871, living in 159 houses, on 4958 acres of land, including  a  range of hills from which lime and other stones are obtained.


Westcote says it was originally called BURY and afterwards BURY NERBERT, from the family who held it some centuries ago. John de Lidford, William Beckleigh and Henry Annet held these lands in the time of King John, and in the following reign, the manor belonged to Ralph de Biry or berry, in whose family it remained until the male line became extinct in 1708, the property being sold by order of the Court of Chancery. In 1712 it was purchased by one of the Bassett family. The last male of that family dying without issue, the property descended to his nephew, Mr Joseph Davie who assumed the name of Bassett. He was succeeded by his son, the Rev. A. C. Bassett, the present owner. East Higgington and Woolscott are manors in this parish and anciently belonged to the Punchardons of Heanton, from whom they passed to the Coffins. One of the last family sold them in the beginning of the present century to J. Davie Basset Esq., father of the present owner.  The Rev. A. C. Bassett, Sir P. B. Chichester and the executors of the late  Charles Cutcliffe are the principal owners of the soil.  Weymouth Castle, the seat of the Bassett family and now occupied on lease by Frederick Williams Esq., RN,  is a large castellated mansion near Watermouth Cove, and was erected in the early part o f the present century.


The manor house stands near the church and was formerly a handsome mansion in the Elizabethan style, but is now in a dilapidated condition. The parish has its annual feast or revel on the first Sunnday after St. Peter's Day. The church (St. Peter) and ancient structure in the Norman and Early English styles, consists of nave, chancel, south aisle and a handsome tower at the west end, containing six bells and a small gallery. The building contains some ancient monuments of the Berry family.


In the aisle is a beautiful modern memorial to several members of the Bassett family; and in the chancel is a marble tablet to the Rev, S. F. Gully MA, a former rector who died in 1860. The east window, a triplet, is filled with rich stained glass. The entire roof of the church was restored in 1850, and the church has recently been re-seated at a cost of £250. The Register dates from 1540. The rectory, valued in the King's Book at £34 15s 10d and now at £750, is in the patronage of the Bishop of Exeter, the Rev. A. C. Bassett, the Rev. Edward Fursdon and others. The Rev. John M. Hawker MA, treasurer and Prebendary of Exeter Cathedral, is the incumbent. A good residence, standing in its grounds of about 3 acres, was  erected in 1860 at a cost of more than £2000 defrayed by the late rector, the Rev. W. Fursdon, aided by a grant of £1000 from Queen Ann's Bounty. The tithes are commuted at £560 a year; and there is a glebe of 126½ acres, including 50 acres of common. The Indepenents have a small chapel, built about 50 years ago, which will seat about 150 persons.


The National School, erected in 1848, was recently enlarged and improved at an expense of £100. Three houses and gardens have been long invested for the repairs of the church; but the church house was given by John Berry in 1697 for the residence of poor parishioners. John Jewel, Bishop of Salisbury, was a native of this parish and the house called Bowden or Buden in which he was born in 1522 is still standing. He was educated at Barnstaple and Oxford. He was appointed Bishop of Salisbury by Queen Elizabeth in 1559 and died in 1591.


Post office at Mr. William Hicks'  Letters are despatched at 5 pm, week days only, via Ilfracombe which is the nearest Money Order Office.



Allin, Joseph, shopkeeper and blacksmith, Down Cross

Rev. Arthur Crawfurth, Watermouth

Berry, John, farmer, Stowford Barton

Berry William, farmer, Rodstone

Bidgood, John, police officer

Beaven, William, farmer, Lower Newberry

Bowden, Joseph, famrer, Rose farm

Boyles John, farmer, Hodges Farm

Bray, William, carpenter

Chugg, Thomas farmer , Brinscott

Clak, Thomas, farmer, Ruggaton

Clatworthy, Richard, farmer, Lee

Corney, William, farmer

Cutcliffe, Charlkes, farmer, Woolscott

Darch, John, farmer, Indiknoll

Edwards, Miss, schoolmistress

Fursdon, mrs. Sarah Ann, The Court Cottage

Gear, Bewnjamin, farmer, Henstridge

Harding, Richard, bootnmaker & market gardener

Harding, Thomas, victualler, the Unicorn

Hawker, Rev. John Manley MA, Rector, Treasurer & Prebendary of Exeter Cathedral, The rectory.

Hicks, William, tailor, draper, postmaster and parish clerk

Huxtable, Mrs. Ann, shopkeeper

Huxtable, James, farmer, Well

Huxtable, John, farmer, Bowden

Huxtable Joseph, blacksmith, Berry Down Cross

Huxtable, William, famer, Ruggaton

Huxtable, William, market gardener

Jewell, John, corn miller

Lancey, R, tailor and draper

Leworthy, John, blacksmith

Leworthy, Thomas, market gardener, Manor House

Ley, Thomas, carpenter

Lock, John, farmer

Millman, John, farmer, Thornland

Perrin, Thomas Farmer, Hill farm

Pile, James, toll collector, Berry Down Cross

Pugsley, Thomas, bootmaker

Quance, Enoch, farmer, Yellaton

Richards, Benjamin, farmer

Richards, Thomas, farmer, East Hagginton

Richards, William, farmer, Newberry

Smith, Richard, farm bailiff, Home Barton

Toms, Frank, farmer, Yetland

White, John, farmer, Hemstor

White, Richard, farmer, Hemstor

White, Richard, farm bailiff, Hemstor

Williams, Mr. Frederick RN, Watermouth Castle

Willis, Thomas. farmer, Lee


^ Home
< Back
? Search
Print this page