Visit Totnes and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Totnes, Devon. Steep up its middle runs an attractive narrow old main street, which is spanned by a room marking its medieval East Gate and with one of Devon's finest churches. Moreover, well situated at the highest navigable point on the Dart, it is the starting point for steamer trips down that stretch of river whose beauty is almost completely denied the car-bound.
Ancient legend claimed that the town was founded by one Brutus, grandson of the Trojan Aeneas. More certainly it was an Anglo-Saxon town with a mint, and in the 15th and 16th centuries, with a cloth industry and a port, was second in the county only to Exeter in merchant affluence. Slow, however, to respond to the fashion for the Flemish-originated “new draperies”, it thereafter declined rapidly, till, in the 19th century retired bourgeoisie began to appreciate the charms of its hinterland. Manifestly recovered today it has some of the smartest antique shops and boutiques in Devon, and quite a colony of neo-craftsmen (potters, silversmiths, etc.)
Its great red church was built e. 1400—68, a great many people taking a hand, the local bishop having promised indulgence to all who helped. Its outstanding feature is a superb stone screen (1460), rivalled in the West County only by Exeter Cathedral's, but much else is splendid, notably its ceilings, pulpit, beautifully carved Corporation pew-fronts (16th-century) and monument to Christopher Blackhail (d. 1633). Immediately North of the church, the 16th-century Guildhall has a court-room of 1553, council chambers of 1624 and various museum pieces. It stands on the site of the priory. Below the building spanning the High Street is an Elizabethan merchant's house.
At the top of the street is the arcaded Butter-walk and near it, in contrast, is the new Civic Hall. About 50 yds North. of the Butterwalk are the ruins of a l2th-century castle, good for views, and close to its entrance is the arch of the town's former North Gate and some pretty, well-restored cottages. A tree-shaded island just below the fine three-arched bridge (1826) over the river is a nice place to watch boats go by.
About 2 miles South West of Totnes, Hasberton church has a finely carved rood-screen and stone pulpit.
Nearby towns: Ashburton, Brixham, Buckfastleigh, Dartmouth, Kingsbridge, Newton Abbot, Paignton, Salcombe, Torquay
Nearby villages: Abbotskerswell, Ashsprington, Berry Pomeroy, Blackawton, Broadhempston, Brownston, Buckland in the Moor, Churston Ferrers, Coffinswell, Cornworthy, Dartington, Dean Prior, Denbury, Diptford, Dittisham, Galmpton, Halwell, Harberton, Highweek, Holne, Ipplepen, Kingskerswell, Kingswear, Marldon, Moreleigh, North Huish, Rattery, Sandquay, South Brent, Staverton, Stoke Gabriel, Stokeinteignhead, Torquay
Have you decided to visit Totnes or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a Totnes bed and breakfast (a Totnes B&B or Totnes b and b)
- a Totnes guesthouse
- a Totnes hotel (or motel)
- a Totnes self-catering establishment, or
- other Totnes accommodation