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Devon
Devon
(/ˈdɛvən/), also known as Devonshire, which was formerly its common and official name, is a county of England, reaching from the Bristol Channel
Bristol Channel
in the north to the English Channel
English Channel
in the south. It is part of South West England, bounded by Cornwall
Cornwall
to the west, Somerset
Somerset
to the northeast, and Dorset
Dorset
to the east. The City of Exeter is the county town; seven other districts of East Devon, Mid Devon, North Devon, South Hams, Teignbridge, Torridge, and West Devon
West Devon
are under the jurisdiction of Devon
Devon
County Council; Plymouth
Plymouth
and Torbay are each a part of Devon
Devon
but administered as unitary authorities.[3] Combined as a ceremonial county, Devon's area is 6,707 km2 (2,590 square miles)[4] and its population is about 1.1 million. Devon
Devon
derives its name from Dumnonia, which, during the British Iron Age, Roman Britain, and Early Medieval was the homeland of the Dumnonii
Dumnonii
Brittonic Celts. The Anglo-Saxon
Anglo-Saxon
settlement of Britain resulted in the partial assimilation of Dumnonia
Dumnonia
into the Kingdom of Wessex
Wessex
during the eighth and ninth centuries. The western boundary with Cornwall
Cornwall
was set at the River Tamar
River Tamar
by King Æthelstan
Æthelstan
in 936. Devon
Devon
was constituted as a shire of the Kingdom of England
England
thereafter. The north and south coasts of Devon
Devon
each have both cliffs and sandy shores, and the county's bays contain seaside resorts, fishing towns, and ports. The inland terrain is rural, generally hilly, and has a low population density in comparison to many other parts of England. Dartmoor
Dartmoor
is the largest open space in southern England
England
at 954 km2 (368 square miles),[5] its moorland extending across a large expanse of granite bedrock. To the north of Dartmoor
Dartmoor
are the Culm Measures
Culm Measures
and Exmoor. In the valleys and lowlands of south and east Devon
Devon
the soil is more fertile, drained by rivers including the Exe, the Culm, the Teign, the Dart, and the Otter. As well as agriculture, much of the economy of Devon
Devon
is linked with tourism. The comparatively mild climate, coastline and landscape give rise to Devon
Devon
as a destination for recreation and leisure in England, with visitors particularly attracted to the Dartmoor
Dartmoor
and Exmoor national parks; its coasts, including the resort towns along the south coast known collectively as the English Riviera, the Jurassic
Jurassic
Coast, and North Devon's UNESCO Biosphere Reserve; and the countryside including the Cornwall
Cornwall
and West Devon
West Devon
Mining Landscape.

Contents

1 History

1.1 Toponymy 1.2 Human occupation

2 Economy and industry 3 Transport

3.1 Rail

3.1.1 Devon
Devon
Metro

3.2 Air

4 Geography and geology

4.1 Geology 4.2 Climate 4.3 Ecology

5 Politics and administration 6 Cities, towns and villages 7 Religion

7.1 Ancient and medieval history 7.2 Later history 7.3 Judaism

8 Symbols

8.1 Coat of arms 8.2 Flag

9 Place names and customs 10 Education 11 Cuisine 12 Sport 13 Devonians

13.1 Notable people

14 See also 15 References 16 Further reading 17 External links

History[edit] Main article: History of Devon Toponymy[edit] The name Devon
Devon
derives from the name of the Britons
Britons
who inhabited the southwestern peninsula of Britain at the time of the Roman conquest of Britain known as the Dumnonii, thought to mean "deep valley dwellers" from proto Celtic *dubnos 'deep'. In the Brittonic, Devon
Devon
is known as Welsh: Dyfnaint, Breton: Devnent and Cornish: Dewnens, each meaning "deep valleys." (For an account of Celtic Dumnonia, see the separate article.) Among the most common Devon
Devon
placenames is -combe which derives from Brittonic cwm meaning 'valley' usually prefixed by the name of the possessor. William Camden, in his 1607 edition of Britannia, described Devon
Devon
as being one part of an older, wider country that once included Cornwall:

THAT region which, according to the Geographers, is the first of all Britaine, and, growing straiter still and narrower, shooteth out farthest into the West, [...] was in antient time inhabited by those Britans whom Solinus called Dumnonii, Ptolomee Damnonii [...] For their habitation all over this Countrey is somewhat low and in valleys, which manner of dwelling is called in the British tongue Dan-munith, in which sense also the Province next adjoyning in like respect is at this day named by the Britans Duffneit, that is to say, Low valleys. [...] But the Country of this nation is at this day divided into two parts, knowen by later names of Cornwall
Cornwall
and Denshire, [...] — William Camden, Britannia.[6]

The term "Devon" is normally used for everyday purposes e.g. "Devon County Council" but "Devonshire" continues to be used in the names of the "Devonshire and Dorset
Dorset
Regiment" and "The Devonshire Association". One erroneous theory is that the "shire" suffix is due to a mistake in the making of the original letters patent for the Duke of Devonshire, resident in Derbyshire. However, there are references to "Defenascire" in Anglo-Saxon
Anglo-Saxon
texts from before 1000 AD (this would mean " Shire
Shire
of the Devonians"),[7] which translates to modern English as "Devonshire". The term Devonshire may have originated around the 8th century, when it changed from Dumnonia
Dumnonia
(Latin) to Defenascir.[8]. Human occupation[edit]

Menhir
Menhir
at Drizzlecombe

Kents Cavern
Kents Cavern
in Torquay
Torquay
had produced human remains from 30–40,000 years ago. Dartmoor
Dartmoor
is thought to have been occupied by Mesolithic hunter-gatherer peoples from about 6000 BC. The Romans held the area under military occupation for around 350 years. Later, the area began to experience Saxon incursions from the east around 600 AD, firstly as small bands of settlers along the coasts of Lyme Bay
Bay
and southern estuaries and later as more organised bands pushing in from the east. Devon
Devon
became a frontier between Brittonic and Anglo-Saxon
Anglo-Saxon
Wessex, and it was largely absorbed into Wessex
Wessex
by the mid 9th century. A genetic study carried out by the University of Oxford
University of Oxford
& University College London discovered separate genetic groups in Cornwall
Cornwall
and Devon, not only were there differences on either side of the Tamar, with a division almost exactly along the modern county boundary dating back to the 6th Century[9] but also between Devon
Devon
and the rest of Southern England, and similarities with the modern northern France, including Brittany. This suggests the Anglo-Saxon
Anglo-Saxon
migration into Devon
Devon
was limited rather than a mass movement of people.[10][11] The border with Cornwall
Cornwall
was set by King Æthelstan
Æthelstan
on the east bank of the River Tamar
River Tamar
in 936 AD. Danish raids also occurred sporadically along many coastal parts of Devon
Devon
between around 800AD and just before the time of the Norman conquest, including the silver mint at Hlidaforda Lydford
Lydford
in 997 and Taintona (a settlement on the Teign estuary) in 1001.[12] Devon
Devon
has also featured in most of the civil conflicts in England since the Norman conquest, including the Wars of the Roses, Perkin Warbeck's rising in 1497, the Prayer Book Rebellion
Prayer Book Rebellion
of 1549, and the English Civil War. The arrival of William of Orange to launch the Glorious Revolution
Glorious Revolution
of 1688 took place at Brixham. Devon
Devon
has produced tin, copper and other metals from ancient times. Devon's tin miners enjoyed a substantial degree of independence through Devon's Stannary Parliament, which dates back to the 12th century. The last recorded sitting was in 1748.[13]

Economy and industry[edit] Main article: Economy of Devon Like neighbouring Cornwall
Cornwall
to the west, historically Devon
Devon
has been disadvantaged economically compared to other parts of Southern England, owing to the decline of a number of core industries, notably fishing, mining and farming. Agriculture
Agriculture
has been an important industry in Devon
Devon
since the 19th century. The 2001 UK foot and mouth crisis harmed the farming community severely.[14] Since then some parts of the agricultural industry have begun to diversify and recover, with a strong local food sector and many artisan producers. Nonetheless in 2015 the dairy industry was still suffering from the low prices offered for wholesale milk by major dairies and especially large supermarket chains.[15]

Part of the seafront of Torquay, south Devon, at high tide.

The attractive lifestyle of the area is drawing in new industries which are not heavily dependent upon geographical location;[16][17] Dartmoor, for instance, has recently seen a significant rise in the percentage of its inhabitants involved in the financial services sector. The Met Office, the UK's national and international weather service, moved to Exeter
Exeter
in 2003. Plymouth
Plymouth
hosts the head office and first ever store of The Range, the only major national retail chain headquartered in Devon. Since the rise of seaside resorts with the arrival of the railways in the 19th century, Devon's economy has been heavily reliant on tourism. The county's economy followed the declining trend of British seaside resorts since the mid-20th century, but with some recent revival and regeneration of its resorts, particularly focused around camping; sports such as surfing, cycling, sailing and heritage. This revival has been aided by the designation of much of Devon's countryside and coastline as the Dartmoor
Dartmoor
and Exmoor
Exmoor
national parks, and the Jurassic Coast and Cornwall
Cornwall
and West Devon
West Devon
Mining Landscape World Heritage Sites. In 2004 the county's tourist revenue was £1.2 billion.[18] More successful visitor attractions are particularly concentrated on food and drink, the South West Coast Path and watersports, including sea-view restaurants in North-West Devon (such as one example belonging to Damien Hurst); surfing there, indoor and outdoor folk music festivals across the county and sailing in the 5-mile (8.0 km) hill-surrounded inlet (ria) at Salcombe. Incomes vary significantly and the average is bolstered by a high proportion of affluent retired people from across Europe's major cities, particularly from the rest of England. Incomes in much of the South Hams
South Hams
and in villages surrounding Exeter
Exeter
and Plymouth
Plymouth
are above the national average. The claimant count of the unemployed and people receiving very low incomes is close to the national average of 4.5% in Torbay, Plymouth
Plymouth
and Exeter. Their exurbs and rural villages contribute to low unemployment in the administrative county as shown below. The table also shows the population change in the ten years to the 2011 census by subdivision. It also shows the proportion of residents in each district reliant upon lowest income and/or joblessness benefits, the national average proportion of which was 4.5% as at August 2012, the year for which latest datasets have been published. It can be seen that the most populous district of Devon
Devon
is East Devon but only if excluding Torbay
Torbay
which has marginally more residents and Plymouth
Plymouth
which has approximately double the number of residents of either of these. West Devon
West Devon
has the fewest residents, having 63,839 at the time of the census.

Population from census to census. Claimants of JSA or Income Support (DWP)[19]

Unit JSA or Inc. Supp. claimants (August 2012)  % of 2011 population JSA and Income Support claimants (August 2001) % of 2001 population Population (April 2011) Population (April 2001)

Devon 2.7% 6.6% 746,399 704,493

Ranked by district

Exeter 3.5% 7.5% 117,773 111,076

Torridge 3.3% 7.7% 63,839 58,965

North Devon 2.8% 7.8% 93,667 87,508

Teignbridge 2.6% 6.7% 124,220 120,958

Mid Devon 2.6% 6.0% 77,750 69,774

West Devon 2.5% 5.9% 53,553 48,843

South Hams 2.1% 6.0% 83,140 81,849

East Devon 1.9% 5.4% 132,457 125,520

In historic Devon

Torbay 5.3% 11.0% 130,959 129,706

Plymouth 5.1% 9.5% 256,384 240,720

Transport[edit] Rail[edit] The key train operator for Devon
Devon
is Great Western Railway, which operates numerous regional, local and suburban services, as well as intercity services north to London Paddington and south to Plymouth and Penzance. Other intercity services are operated by CrossCountry north to Manchester Piccadilly, Edinburgh Waverley, Glasgow Central, Dundee, Aberdeen and south to Plymouth
Plymouth
and Penzance, and South Western Railway,operating services between London Waterloo and Exeter
Exeter
St Davids via the West of England
England
Main Line. All Devon
Devon
services are diesel-hauled, since there are no electrified lines in the county. The Exeter
Exeter
to Plymouth
Plymouth
railway of the LSWR needs to be reopened to connect Cornwall
Cornwall
and Plymouth
Plymouth
to the rest of the UK railway system on an all weather basis. There are proposals to reopen the line from Tavistock
Tavistock
to Bere Alston for a through service to Plymouth.[20] On the night of 4 February 2014, amid high winds and extremely rough seas, part of the sea wall at Dawlish
Dawlish
was breached washing away around 40 metres (130 ft) of the wall and the ballast under the railway immediately behind. The line was closed. Network Rail
Network Rail
began repair work [21] and the line reopened on 4 April 2014.[22] In the wake of widespread disruption caused by damage to the mainline track at Dawlish
Dawlish
by coastal storms in February 2014, Network Rail
Network Rail
are considering reopening the Tavistock
Tavistock
to Okehampton
Okehampton
and Exeter
Exeter
section of the line as an alternative to the coastal route.[23] Devon
Devon
Metro[edit] Devon County Council
Devon County Council
has proposed a " Devon
Devon
Metro" scheme to improve rail services in the county and offer a realistic alternative to car travel. This includes the delivery of Cranbrook station, plus four new stations (including Edginswell) as a priority.[24] Air[edit] Exeter
Exeter
Airport is a base for Flybe. Destinations include London City, Manchester, Dublin, Paris and Amsterdam. Geography and geology[edit]

Heathland at Woodbury Common in south east Devon.

Cliffs in Devon.

Ilfracombe, on the coast of North Devon.

Devon
Devon
straddles a peninsula and so has two separate coastlines, on the Bristol Channel
Bristol Channel
and Celtic Sea
Celtic Sea
in the north, and on the English Channel in the south.[25] The South West Coast Path
South West Coast Path
runs along the entire length of both, around 65% of which is named as Heritage Coast. Before the changes to English counties in 1974, Devon
Devon
was the third largest county by area and the largest of the counties not divided into county-like divisions (only Yorkshire and Lincolnshire
Lincolnshire
were larger and both were sub-divided into ridings or parts, respectively).[26] Since 1974 the county is ranked fourth by area (due to the creation of Cumbria) amongst ceremonial counties and is the third largest non-metropolitan county. The island of Lundy
Lundy
and the reef of Eddystone are also in Devon. The county has more mileage of road than any other county in England. Inland, the Dartmoor
Dartmoor
National Park lies wholly in Devon, and the Exmoor
Exmoor
National Park lies in both Devon
Devon
and Somerset. Apart from these areas of high moorland the county has attractive rolling rural scenery and villages with thatched cob cottages. All these features make Devon a popular holiday destination. In South Devon the landscape consists of rolling hills dotted with small towns, such as Dartmouth, Ivybridge, Kingsbridge, Salcombe, and Totnes. The towns of Torquay
Torquay
and Paignton
Paignton
are the principal seaside resorts on the south coast. East Devon
East Devon
has the first seaside resort to be developed in the county, Exmouth
Exmouth
and the more upmarket Georgian town of Sidmouth, headquarters of the East Devon
East Devon
District Council. Exmouth
Exmouth
marks the western end of the Jurassic Coast
Jurassic Coast
World Heritage Site. Another notable feature is the coastal railway line between Newton Abbot
Newton Abbot
and the Exe Estuary: the red sandstone cliffs and sea views are very dramatic and in the resorts railway line and beaches are very near.

Torquay
Torquay
sea front during Storm Emma - March 2018

North Devon
North Devon
is very rural with few major towns except Barnstaple, Great Torrington, Bideford
Bideford
and Ilfracombe. Devon's Exmoor
Exmoor
coast has the highest cliffs in southern Britain, culminating in the Great Hangman, a 318 m (1,043 ft) "hog's-back" hill with an 250 m (820 ft) cliff-face, located near Combe Martin Bay.[27] Its sister cliff is the 218 m (715 ft) Little Hangman, which marks the western edge of coastal Exmoor. One of the features of the North Devon
North Devon
coast is that Bideford
Bideford
Bay
Bay
and the Hartland Point
Hartland Point
peninsula are both west-facing, Atlantic facing coastlines; so that a combination of an off-shore (east) wind and an Atlantic swell produce excellent surfing conditions. The beaches of Bideford
Bideford
Bay
Bay
(Woolacombe, Saunton, Westward Ho!
Westward Ho!
and Croyde), along with parts of North Cornwall
Cornwall
and South Wales, are the main centres of surfing in Britain. See also: List of mountains and hills of Devon Geology[edit]

Geological map of Wales & Southwest England.

A geological dividing line cuts across Devon
Devon
roughly along the line of the Bristol
Bristol
to Exeter
Exeter
Line and the M5 motorway east of Tiverton and Exeter. It is a part of the Tees-Exe line
Tees-Exe line
broadly dividing Britain into a southeastern lowland zone typified by gently dipping sedimentary rocks and a northwestern upland zone typified by igneous rocks and folded sedimentary and metamorphic rocks. The principal geological components of Devon
Devon
are the Devonian
Devonian
(in north Devon, south west Devon
Devon
and extending into Cornwall); the Culm Measures (north western Devon
Devon
also extending into north Cornwall); and the granite intrusion of Dartmoor
Dartmoor
in central Devon, part of the Cornubian batholith
Cornubian batholith
forming the 'spine' of the southwestern peninsula. There are small remains of pre- Devonian
Devonian
rocks on the south Devon coast.[28] The oldest rocks which can be dated are those of the Devonian
Devonian
period which are approximately 395–345 million years old. Sandstones and shales were deposited in North and South Devon beneath tropical seas. In shallower waters, limestone beds were laid down in the area now near Torquay
Torquay
and Plymouth.[29] This geological period was named after Devon
Devon
by Roderick Murchison
Roderick Murchison
and Adam Sedgwick
Adam Sedgwick
in the 1840s and is the only British county whose name is used worldwide as a geological time period.[30] Devon's second major rock system[31] is the Culm Measures, a geological formation of the Carboniferous
Carboniferous
period that occurs principally in Devon
Devon
and Cornwall. The measures are so called either from the occasional presence of a soft, sooty coal, which is known in Devon
Devon
as culm, or from the contortions commonly found in the beds.[32] This formation stretches from Bideford
Bideford
to Bude
Bude
in Cornwall, and contributes to a gentler, greener, more rounded landscape. It is also found on the western, north and eastern borders of Dartmoor. The sedimentary rocks in more eastern parts of the county include Permian
Permian
and Triassic
Triassic
sandstones (giving rise to east Devon's well known fertile red soils); Bunter pebble beds around Budleigh Salterton and Woodbury Common and Jurassic
Jurassic
rocks in the easternmost parts of Devon. Smaller outcrops of younger rocks also exist, such as Cretaceous chalk cliffs at Beer Head and gravels on Haldon, plus Eocene
Eocene
and Oligocene
Oligocene
ball clay and lignite deposits in the Bovey Basin, formed around 50 million years ago under tropical forest conditions. Climate[edit] See also: Dartmoor
Dartmoor
§ Climate, and climate of south-west England

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Devon
Devon
generally has a mild climate, heavily influenced by the North Atlantic Drift. In winter snow is relatively uncommon away from high land, although there are exceptions, such as the snowfalls of February 2009, December 2010, and March 2018. The county has warm summers with occasional hot spells and cool rainy periods. Winters are generally mild and the county often experiences some of the mildest winters in the world for its latitude, with average daily maximum temperatures in January approaching 10 °C (50 °F). Rainfall varies significantly across the county, ranging from over 2,000 mm (79 in) on parts of Dartmoor, to around 750 mm (30 in) in the rain shadow along the coast in southeastern Devon
Devon
and around Exeter. Sunshine amounts also vary widely: the moors are generally cloudy, but the SE coast from Salcombe
Salcombe
to Exmouth
Exmouth
is one of the sunniest parts of the UK. In summer, easterly or southeasterly winds mean the area around Saunton
Saunton
and Croyde
Croyde
often records among the highest temperatures in Britain, exceeding 32 °C (90 °F) about twice every decade. Similarly, with westerly or southwesterly winds and high pressure the area around Torbay
Torbay
and Teignmouth
Teignmouth
will often be very warm, with long sunny spells due to shelter by high ground (Foehn wind).

Climate data for Devon

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year

Average high °C (°F) 8 (46) 8 (46) 10 (50) 12 (54) 15 (59) 18 (64) 19 (66) 19 (66) 18 (64) 15 (59) 11 (52) 9 (48) 13.5 (56.3)

Average low °C (°F) 4 (39) 4 (39) 5 (41) 6 (43) 8 (46) 11 (52) 13 (55) 13 (55) 12 (54) 9 (48) 7 (45) 5 (41) 8 (46)

[citation needed]

Fields in south Devon
Devon
after a snowfall.

Ecology[edit]

Ponies grazing on Exmoor
Exmoor
near Brendon, North Devon.

The variety of habitats means that there is a wide range of wildlife (see Dartmoor
Dartmoor
wildlife, for example). A popular challenge among birders is to find over 100 species in the county in a day.[citation needed] The county's wildlife is protected by several wildlife charities such as the Devon
Devon
Wildlife Trust, which looks after 40 nature reserves. The Devon
Devon
Bird Watching and Preservation Society (founded in 1928 and known since 2005 as " Devon
Devon
Birds") is a county bird society dedicated to the study and conservation of wild birds.[33] The RSPB
RSPB
has reserves in the county, and Natural England
England
is responsible for over 200 Devon
Devon
Sites of Special
Special
Scientific Interest and National Nature Reserves,[34] such as Slapton Ley. The Devon
Devon
Bat Group was founded in 1984 to help conserve bats. Wildlife found in this area extend to a plethora of different kinds of insects, butterflies and moths; an interesting butterfly to take look at is the Chequered skipper. The botany of the county is very diverse and includes some rare species not found elsewhere in the British Isles other than Cornwall. Devon
Devon
is divided into two Watsonian vice-counties: north and south, the boundary being an irregular line approximately across the higher part of Dartmoor
Dartmoor
and then along the canal eastwards. Botanical reports begin in the 17th century and there is a Flora Devoniensis by Jones and Kingston in 1829.[35] A general account appeared in The Victoria History of the County of Devon
Devon
(1906), and a Flora of Devon
Devon
was published in 1939 by Keble Martin and Fraser.[36] An Atlas of the Devon
Devon
Flora by Ivimey-Cook appeared in 1984, and A New Flora of Devon, based on field work undertaken between 2005 and 2014, was published in 2016.[37] Rising temperatures have led to Devon
Devon
becoming the first place in modern Britain to cultivate olives commercially.[38] Politics and administration[edit] See also: Devon County Council
Devon County Council
election, 2013 and Local Government Act 2010

County Hall, Exeter. Headquarters for Devon
Devon
County Council.

The administrative centre and capital of Devon
Devon
is the city of Exeter. The largest city in Devon, Plymouth, and the conurbation of Torbay (which includes the largest town in Devon
Devon
and capital of Torbay Torquay, as well as Paignton
Paignton
and Brixham) have been unitary authorities since 1998, separate from the remainder of Devon
Devon
which is administered by Devon County Council
Devon County Council
for the purposes of local government. Devon County Council
Devon County Council
is controlled by the Conservatives, and the political representation of its 62 councillors are: 38 Conservatives, 9 Liberal Democrats, seven Labour, four UKIP, three Independents and one Green.[39] At the 2015 general election, Devon
Devon
returned 11 Conservatives and one Labour MP from its 12 constituencies through first-past-the-post. The county is represented in the wider South West England
England
(European Parliament constituency), which returned two UKIP, two Conservative, one Labour and one Green MEP at the 2014 election using the d'Hondt method of party-list proportional representation.

Hundreds

Historically Devon
Devon
was divided into 32 hundreds:[40] Axminster, Bampton, Black Torrington, Braunton, Cliston, Coleridge, Colyton, Crediton, East Budleigh, Ermington, Exminster, Fremington, Halberton, Hartland, Hayridge, Haytor, Hemyock, Lifton, North Tawton
North Tawton
and Winkleigh, Ottery, Plympton, Roborough, Shebbear, Shirwell, South Molton, Stanborough, Tavistock, Teignbridge, Tiverton, West Budleigh, Witheridge, and Wonford. Cities, towns and villages[edit] Main articles: List of places in Devon
List of places in Devon
and List of towns and cities in Devon
Devon
by population

The inner harbour, Brixham, south Devon, at low tide.

The main settlements in Devon
Devon
are the cities of Plymouth, a historic port now administratively independent, Exeter, the county town, and Torbay, the county's tourist centre. Devon's coast is lined with tourist resorts, many of which grew rapidly with the arrival of the railways in the 19th century. Examples include Dawlish, Exmouth
Exmouth
and Sidmouth
Sidmouth
on the south coast, and Ilfracombe
Ilfracombe
and Lynmouth
Lynmouth
on the north. The Torbay
Torbay
conurbation of Torquay, Paignton
Paignton
and Brixham
Brixham
on the south coast is now administratively independent of the county. Rural
Rural
market towns in the county include Barnstaple, Bideford, Honiton, Newton Abbot, Okehampton, Tavistock, Totnes
Totnes
and Tiverton. The boundary with Cornwall
Cornwall
has not always been on the River Tamar
River Tamar
as at present: until the late 19th century a few parishes in the Torpoint area were in Devon
Devon
and five parishes now in north-east Cornwall
Cornwall
were in Devon
Devon
until 1974. (However, for ecclesiastical purposes these were nevertheless in the Archdeaconry of Cornwall
Cornwall
and in 1876 became part of the Diocese of Truro.) Religion[edit] Ancient and medieval history[edit]

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The region of Devon
Devon
was the dominion of the Dumnonii
Dumnonii
Celtic tribe they were also called "Deep Valley Dwellers". The region was less Romanised than the rest of Roman Britain
Roman Britain
since it was considered a remote province. The Romans left the region around AD 410, this is when one of the leading Dumnonii
Dumnonii
families attempted to create a dynasty and rules over Devon
Devon
as the Kings of Dumnonii.[41] Celtic paganism and Roman practices were the first known religions in Devon, although in the mid-fourth century AD, Christianity was introduced to Devon.[42][citation needed] In the Sub-Roman period the church in the British Isles was characterised by some differences in practice from the Latin
Latin
Christianity of the continent of Europe and is known as Celtic Christianity;[43][44][45] however it was always in communion with the wider Roman Catholic Church. Many Cornish saints are commemorated also in Devon
Devon
in legends, churches and placenames. Western Christianity
Western Christianity
came to Devon
Devon
when it was over a long period incorporated into the kingdom of Wessex
Wessex
and the jurisdiction of the bishop of Wessex. Saint Petroc
Saint Petroc
is said to have passed through Devon, where ancient dedications to him are even more numerous than in Cornwall: a probable seventeen (plus Timberscombe
Timberscombe
just over the border in Somerset), compared to Cornwall's five. The position of churches bearing his name, including one within the old Roman walls of Exeter, are nearly always near the coast, reminding us that in those days travelling was done mainly by sea. The Devonian
Devonian
villages of Petrockstowe
Petrockstowe
and Newton St Petroc
Newton St Petroc
are also named after Saint
Saint
Petroc and the flag of Devon
Devon
is dedicated to him. The history of Christianity in the South West of England
England
remains to some degree obscure. Parts of the historic county of Devon
Devon
formed part of the diocese of Wessex, while nothing is known of the church organisation of the Celtic areas. About 703 Devon
Devon
and Cornwall
Cornwall
were included in the separate diocese of Sherborne and in 900 this was again divided into two, the Devon
Devon
bishop having from 905 his seat at Tawton (now Bishop's Tawton) and from 912 at Crediton, birthplace of St Boniface. Lyfing became Bishop of Crediton
Crediton
in 1027 and shortly afterwards became Bishop of Cornwall. The two dioceses of Crediton
Crediton
and Cornwall, covering Devon
Devon
and Cornwall, were permanently united under Edward the Confessor
Edward the Confessor
by Lyfing's successor Bishop Leofric, hitherto Bishop of Crediton, who became first Bishop of Exeter
Exeter
under Edward the Confessor, which was established as his cathedral city in 1050. At first, the abbey church of St Mary and St Peter, founded by Athelstan in 932 and rebuilt in 1019, served as the cathedral. Later history[edit] In 1549, the Prayer Book Rebellion
Prayer Book Rebellion
caused the deaths of thousands of people from Devon
Devon
and Cornwall. During the English Reformation, churches in Devon
Devon
officially became affiliated with the Church of England. From the late sixteenth century onwards, zealous Protestantism – or 'puritanism' – became increasingly well-entrenched in some parts of Devon, while other districts of the county remained much more conservative. These divisions would become starkly apparent during the English Civil War
English Civil War
of 1642–46, when the county split apart along religious and cultural lines.[46] The Methodism
Methodism
of John Wesley
John Wesley
proved to be very popular with the working classes in Devon
Devon
in the 19th century. Methodist chapels became important social centres, with male voice choirs and other church-affiliated groups playing a central role in the social lives of working class Devonians. Methodism
Methodism
still plays a large part in the religious life of Devon
Devon
today, although the county has shared in the post-World War II decline in British religious feeling. The Diocese of Exeter
Exeter
remains the Anglican diocese including the whole of Devon. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Plymouth
Plymouth
was established in the mid 19th century.[47] Judaism[edit] Despite its small Jewish population, Devon
Devon
is also noted for containing two of Britain's oldest synagogues, located in Plymouth
Plymouth
and Exeter, built in 1762 and 1763 respectively. Symbols[edit] Coat of arms[edit]

The coat of arms of Devon
Devon
County Council.

There was no established coat of arms for the county until 1926: the arms of the City of Exeter
Exeter
were often used to represent Devon, for instance in the badge of the Devonshire Regiment. During the forming of a county council by the Local Government Act 1888
Local Government Act 1888
adoption of a common seal was required. The seal contained three shields depicting the arms of Exeter
Exeter
along with those of the first chairman and vice-chairman of the council (Lord Clinton and the Earl of Morley).[48] On 11 October 1926, the county council received a grant of arms from the College of Arms. The main part of the shield displays a red crowned lion on a silver field, the arms of Richard Plantagenet, Earl of Cornwall. The chief or upper portion of the shield depicts an ancient ship on wavers, for Devon's seafaring traditions. The Latin motto adopted was Auxilio Divino (by Divine aid), that of Sir Francis Drake. The 1926 grant was of arms alone. On 6 March 1962 a further grant of crest and supporters was obtained. The crest is the head of a Dartmoor
Dartmoor
Pony rising from a "Naval Crown". This distinctive form of crown is formed from the sails and sterns of ships, and is associated with the Royal Navy. The supporters are a Devon
Devon
bull and a sea lion.[49][50] Devon County Council
Devon County Council
adopted a "ship silhouette" logo after the 1974 reorganisation, adapted from the ship emblem on the coat of arms, but following the loss in 1998 of Plymouth
Plymouth
and Torbay
Torbay
re-adopted the coat of arms. In April 2006 the council unveiled a new logo which was to be used in most everyday applications, though the coat of arms will continue to be used for "various civic purposes".[51][52] Flag[edit] Main article: Flag of Devon Devon
Devon
also has its own flag which has been dedicated to Saint
Saint
Petroc, a local saint with dedications throughout Devon
Devon
and neighbouring counties. The flag was adopted in 2003 after a competition run by BBC Radio Devon.[53] The winning design was created by website contributor Ryan Sealey, and won 49% of the votes cast. The colours of the flag are those popularly identified with Devon, for example, the colours of Exeter
Exeter
University, the rugby union team, and the Green and White flag flown by the first Viscount Exmouth
Viscount Exmouth
at the Bombardment of Algiers (now on view at the Teign Valley Museum), as well as one of the county's football teams, Plymouth
Plymouth
Argyle. On 17 October 2006, the flag was hoisted for the first time outside County Hall in Exeter
Exeter
to mark Local Democracy Week, receiving official recognition from the county council.[54] Place names and customs[edit]

The beach at Westward Ho!, North Devon, looking north towards the shared estuary of the rivers Taw and Torridge.

Devon's toponyms include many with the endings "coombe/combe" and "tor". Both 'coombe' (valley or hollow, cf. Welsh cwm, Cornish komm) and 'tor' (Old Welsh twrr and Scots Gaelic tòrr from Latin
Latin
turris; 'tower' used for granite formations) are rare Celtic loanwords in English and their frequency is greatest in Devon
Devon
which shares a boundary with Brittonic speaking Cornwall. Ruined medieval settlements of Dartmoor
Dartmoor
longhouses indicate that dispersed rural settlement (OE tun, now often -ton) was very similar to that found in Cornish 'tre-' settlements, however these are generally described with the local placename -(a)cott, from the Old English for homestead, cf. cottage. Saxon endings in -worthy (from Anglo-Saxon
Anglo-Saxon
worthig) indicate larger settlements. Several 'Bere's indicate Anglo-Saxon
Anglo-Saxon
wood groves, as 'leighs' indicate clearings.[55] Devon
Devon
has a variety of festivals and traditional practices, including the traditional orchard-visiting Wassail
Wassail
in Whimple
Whimple
every 17 January, and the carrying of flaming tar barrels in Ottery St. Mary, where people who have lived in Ottery for long enough are called upon to celebrate Bonfire Night by running through the village (and the gathered crowds) with flaming barrels on their backs.[56] Berry Pomeroy still celebrates "Queen's Day" for Elizabeth I. Education[edit] Main article: List of schools in Devon Devon
Devon
has a mostly comprehensive education system. There are 37 state and 23 independent secondary schools. There are three tertiary (FE) colleges and an agricultural college (Bicton College, near Budleigh Salterton). Torbay
Torbay
has 8 state (with 3 grammar schools) and 3 independent secondary schools, and Plymouth
Plymouth
has 17 state (with 3 grammar schools – two female and one male) and one independent school, Plymouth
Plymouth
College. East Devon
East Devon
and Teignbridge
Teignbridge
have the largest school populations, with West Devon
West Devon
the smallest (with only two schools). Only one school in Exeter, Mid Devon, Torridge
Torridge
and North Devon
Devon
have a sixth form – the schools in other districts mostly have sixth forms, with all schools in West Devon
West Devon
and East Devon
East Devon
having a sixth form. Two universities are located in Devon, the University of Exeter
Exeter
(split between the Streatham Campus
Streatham Campus
and St Luke's Campus, both in Exeter, and a campus in Cornwall); in Plymouth
Plymouth
the University of Plymouth
Plymouth
in Britain is present, along with the University of St Mark & St John to the city's north. The universities of Exeter
Exeter
and Plymouth
Plymouth
have together formed the Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry
Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry
which has bases in Exeter
Exeter
and Plymouth. There is also Schumacher College. Cuisine[edit] Main article: Cuisine of Devon The county has given its name to a number of culinary specialities. The Devonshire cream tea, involving scones, jam and clotted cream, is thought to have originated in Devon
Devon
(though claims have also been made for neighbouring counties); in other countries, such as Australia and New Zealand, it is known as a "Devonshire tea".[57][58][59] In Australia, Devon
Devon
is a name for luncheon meat (processed ham). In October 2008, Devon
Devon
was awarded Fairtrade County status by the Fairtrade Foundation. Sport[edit] Devon
Devon
has been home to a number of customs, such as its own form of Devon
Devon
wrestling, similar in some ways to Cornish wrestling. As recently as the 19th century, a crowd of 17,000 at Devonport, near Plymouth, attended a match between the champions of Devon
Devon
and Cornwall. Another Devon
Devon
sport was outhurling which was played in some regions until the 20th century (e.g. 1922, at Great Torrington). Other ancient customs which survive include Dartmoor
Dartmoor
step dancing, and "Crying The Neck". Devon
Devon
has three professional football teams, based in each of its most populous towns and cities. As of the 2017/2018 football season, Plymouth
Plymouth
Argyle F.C. compete in English Football League One
Football League One
(the third tier of English professional football), Exeter
Exeter
City F.C. compete in English Football League Two
Football League Two
(the fourth tier), while Torquay
Torquay
United F.C. compete in the National League (the fifth tier). Plymouth's highest Football League finish was fourth in the Second Division, which was achieved twice, in 1932 and 1953. Torquay
Torquay
and Exeter
Exeter
have never progressed beyond the third tier of the league; Torquay
Torquay
finished second on goal average in the Third Division (S) behind Sir Alf Ramsey's Ipswich Town in 1957. Exeter's highest position has been eighth in the Third Division (S). The county's biggest non-league clubs are Bideford
Bideford
F.C. which competes in the Southern Football League Premier Division, and Tiverton Town F.C.
Tiverton Town F.C.
which is in the Southern Football League Division One South and West. Rugby Union
Rugby Union
is very popular in Devon
Devon
with over forty clubs under the banner of the Devon
Devon
Rugby Football Union, many with numerous teams at senior, youth and junior levels. One club – Exeter
Exeter
Chiefs play in the Aviva Premiership, winning the title in 2017 for the first time in their history after beating Wasps RFC
Wasps RFC
in the final 23-20. Plymouth Albion who are, as of 2017, in the National League 1
National League 1
(The 3rd tier of English Professional Rugby Union. In basketball, Plymouth
Plymouth
Raiders play in the British Basketball League. Tamar Valley Cannons, also based in Plymouth, are Devon's only other representatives in the National Leagues. Motorcycle speedway
Motorcycle speedway
is also supported in the county, with both the Exeter
Exeter
Falcons and Plymouth
Plymouth
Devils succeeding in the National Leagues in recent years. There are five rugby league teams in Devon. Plymouth
Plymouth
Titans, Exeter Centurions, Devon
Devon
Sharks from Torquay, North Devon
North Devon
Raiders from Barnstaple
Barnstaple
and East Devon
East Devon
Eagles from Exmouth. They all play in the Rugby League Conference. Devon
Devon
also boasts a field hockey club who play in the National Premier League, the University of Exeter
Exeter
Hockey Club Horse Racing, particularly point to point racing and National Hunt Racing is also popular in the county, with two National Hunt racecourses ( Exeter
Exeter
and Newton Abbot), and numerous point to point courses. There are also many successful professional racehorse trainers based in Devon. The county is represented in cricket by Devon
Devon
County Cricket
Cricket
Club, who play at a Minor counties level. Devonians[edit] Notable people[edit] Main article: Notable people from Devon

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Agatha Christie, best selling crime novelist

Devon
Devon
is known for its mariners, such as Sir Francis Drake, Sir Humphrey Gilbert, Sir Richard Grenville, Sir Walter Raleigh, and Sir Francis Chichester. Henry Every, described as the most notorious pirate of the late 17th century, was probably born in the village of Newton Ferrers.[60] John Oxenham (1536–1580) was a lieutenant of Drake but considered a pirate by the Spanish. Thomas Morton (1576–1647?) was an avid Elizabethan outdoorsman probably born in Devon
Devon
who became an attorney for The Council For New England, and built the New England
England
fur-trading-plantation called Ma-Re Mount or Merrymount around a West Country-style Maypole, much to the displeasure of Pilgrim and Puritan colonists. Morton wrote a 1637 book New English Canaan about his experiences, partly in verse, and may have thereby become America's first poet to write in English.[61] Another famous mariner and Devonian
Devonian
was Robert Falcon Scott, the leader of the unfortunate Terra Nova Expedition
Terra Nova Expedition
to reach the geographical South Pole.[62] The poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge, the crime writer Agatha Christie
Agatha Christie
and the poet Ted Hughes
Ted Hughes
lived in Devon (his funeral and cremation were held there). The painter and founder of the Royal Academy, Sir Joshua Reynolds, was born in Devon. Chris Dawson, the billionaire owner of retailer The Range was born in Devon, where his business retains its head office in Plymouth.

Chris Martin, lead singer of Coldplay

The actor Matthew Goode
Matthew Goode
was raised in Devon, and Bradley James, also an actor, was born there. The singer Joss Stone
Joss Stone
was brought up in Devon
Devon
and frontman Chris Martin
Chris Martin
from the British rock group Coldplay was born there. Matt Bellamy, Dominic Howard
Dominic Howard
and Christopher Wolstenholme from the English group Muse all grew up in Devon
Devon
and formed the band there. Dave Hill of rock band Slade
Slade
was born in Flete House which is in the South Hams
South Hams
district of Devon. Singer-songwriter Ben Howard
Ben Howard
grew up in Totnes, a small town in Devon. Another famous Devonian
Devonian
is the model and actress Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, who was born in Plymouth
Plymouth
and raised in Tavistock. The singer and songwriter Rebecca Newman
Rebecca Newman
was born and raised in Exmouth.[63] Roger Deakins, called “the pre-eminent cinematographer of our time", was born and lives in Devon.[64]

Roger Deakins, acclaimed cinematographer

Trevor Francis, former Nottingham Forest and Birmingham City professional footballer, and the first English footballer to cost £1 million, was born and brought up in Plymouth.[65] Swimmer Sharron Davies[66] and diver Tom Daley were born in Plymouth. The Olympic runner Jo Pavey
Jo Pavey
was born in Honiton. Peter Cook the satirist, writer and comedian was born in Torquay, Devon. Leicester Tigers and British and Irish Lions
British and Irish Lions
Rugby player Julian White MBE
MBE
was born and raised in Devon
Devon
and now farms a herd of pedigree South Devon beef cattle. The dog breeder John "Jack" Russell
John "Jack" Russell
was also from Devon. Jane McGrath, who married Australian cricketer Glenn McGrath
Glenn McGrath
was born in Paignton, her long battle with and subsequent death from breast cancer inspired the formation of the McGrath Foundation, which is one of Australia's leading charities. See also[edit]

List of Lord Lieutenants of Devon List of High Sheriffs of Devon Healthcare in Devon Custos Rotulorum of Devon – Keepers of the Rolls List of MPs for Devon
Devon
constituency Category:Rivers of Devon Devonshire eggs List of mountains and hills of Devon List of monastic houses in Devon List of Sites of Special Scientific Interest
Sites of Special Scientific Interest
in Devon North Devon
North Devon
Coast West Country dialects Circular linhay Devon
Devon
Sinfonia

References[edit]

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Devon
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Devon
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Devon County Council
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Devon
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Dartmoor
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Lydford
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Devon
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News. 4 April 2014. Retrieved 4 April 2014.  ^ " Network Rail
Network Rail
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News. 10 February 2014. Retrieved 10 February 2014.  ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 25 April 2015.  ^ Dewey, Henry (1948) British Regional Geology: South West England, 2nd ed. London: H.M.S.O. ^ Whitaker's Almanack, 1972; p. 631 ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 24 July 2008. Retrieved 1 August 2009.  ^ Edmonds, E. A., et al. (1975) South-West England; based on previous editions by H. Dewey ( British Geological Survey
British Geological Survey
UK Regional Geology Guide series no. 17, 4th ed.) London: HMSO ISBN 0-11-880713-7 ^ Hesketh, Robert (2006). Devon's Geology: An Introduction. Bossiney Books. ISBN 978-1-899-383-89-4.  ^ Laming, Deryck; Roche, David. " Devon
Devon
Geology Guide – Devonian Slates, Sandstones and Volcanics" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 November 2013. Retrieved 14 May 2014.  ^ "Devon's Rocks – A Geological Guide". Devon
Devon
County Council. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 18 May 2011.  ^ Edmonds, E. A.; McKeown, M. C.; Williams, M. (1975). "Carboniferous Rocks". South-West England. British Geology. Dewey, H. (4th ed.). London: HMSO/British Geological Survey. p. 34. ISBN 0-11-880713-7.  ^ "The Society – Introduction". Devon
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Martin, W. Keble
& Fraser, G. T. (eds.) (1939) Flora of Devon. Arbroath ^ Smith, R.; Hodgson, B.; Ison, J. (2016). A New Flora of Devon. Exeter: The Devonshire Association. p. 1. ISBN 978 1 5272 0525 3.  ^ Paul Simons (14 May 2007). "Britain warms to the taste for home-grown olives". The Times. UK. Retrieved 20 September 2007.  ^ "Tories take over county council". The BBC. 5 June 2009. Retrieved 6 June 2009.  ^ " Devon
Devon
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Anglo-Saxon
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Devon
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Further reading[edit]

Oliver, George (1846) Monasticon Dioecesis Exoniensis: being a collection of records and instruments illustrating the ancient conventual, collegiate, and eleemosynary foundations, in the Counties of Cornwall
Cornwall
and Devon, with historical notices, and a supplement, comprising a list of the dedications of churches in the Diocese, an amended edition of the taxation of Pope Nicholas, and an abstract of the Chantry Rolls [with supplement and index]. Exeter: P. A. Hannaford, 1846, 1854, 1889 Pevsner, N. (1952) North Devon
North Devon
and South Devon (Buildings of England). 2 vols. Penguin Books Stabb, John Some Old Devon
Devon
Churches: their rood screens, pulpits, fonts, etc.. 3 vols. London: Simpkin, Marshall, Hamilton, Kent, 1908, 1911, 1916 Stoyle, Mark (1994) Loyalty and Locality: Popular Allegiance in Devon during the English Civil War. Exeter: University of Exeter
Exeter
Press

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons
Wikimedia Commons
has media related to: Devon
Devon
(category)

Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Devon.

Wikisource
Wikisource
has the text of the Encyclopaedia Britannica
Encyclopaedia Britannica
(9th ed.) article Devonshire.

Devon
Devon
County Council BBC
BBC
Devon Genuki Devon
Devon
Historical, geographical and genealogical information The Devonshire Association, a Devon-centric equivalent of the British Association Devon
Devon
at Curlie (based on DMOZ) Images of Devon
Devon
at the English Heritage Archive

Neighbouring counties

Bristol
Bristol
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Bristol
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Dorset

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Counties

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Districts of South West England

Devon

East Devon Exeter Mid Devon North Devon South Hams Teignbridge Torridge West Devon

Dorset

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Gloucestershire

Cheltenham Cotswold District Forest of Dean District Gloucester Stroud District Tewkesbury Borough

Somerset

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Ceremonial county of Devon

Devon
Devon
Portal

Unitary authorities

Plymouth Torbay

Boroughs or districts

Exeter East Devon Mid Devon North Devon Torridge West Devon South Hams Teignbridge

Major settlements

Ashburton Axminster Bampton Barnstaple Bideford Bovey Tracey Bradninch Brixham Buckfastleigh Budleigh Salterton Chagford Chudleigh Chulmleigh Crediton Cullompton Dartmouth Dawlish Exeter Exmouth Great Torrington Hartland Hatherleigh Holsworthy Honiton Ilfracombe Ivybridge Kingsbridge Kingsteignton Lynton Modbury Moretonhampstead Newton Abbot North Tawton Northam Okehampton Ottery St Mary Paignton Plymouth Plympton Salcombe Seaton Sidmouth South Molton Tavistock Teignmouth Tiverton Topsham Torquay Totnes See also: List of civil parishes in Devon

Rivers

Ashburn Avon Axe Barle Bovey Bray Burn Clyst Creedy Culm Dart East Dart West Dart Erme Exe Heddon Lemon Lew Lumburn Lyd East Lyn West Lyn Meavy Mole Okement East Okement West Okement Otter Plym Sid Swincombe Tamar Tavy Taw Teign Thrushel Torridge Walkham Wallabrooke East Webburn West Webburn Wolf Yealm

Topics

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Devon
County Council Parliamentary constituencies Economy Places Towns by population SSSIs Country houses Grade I listed buildings Grade II* listed buildings Bridges History Schools Museums Lord Lieutenants High Sheriffs Notable people Dartmoor Exmoor Jurassic
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Coast South West Coast Path North Devon's

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