The Roman walls of Exeter are "at risk" according to historic England

Historic England has published the annual Heritage at Risk Register adding a number of famous Devon landmarks, including the Roman walls of Exeter.

Other highlights in the south-western region include a 19th-century fort at Plymouth, a prehistoric turmoil on Bodmin Moor, and a 500-year-old wreck to Axmouth.

The register reveals that the region is home to 1455 historical sites at risk of neglect, decadence or inappropriate change, including 187 Grade II and II * buildings and planned structural monuments, 165 places of worship and 1053 archeology items.

John Ette, a major risk asset in the southwest, said: "Over the past 20 years we have used the Heritage at Risk registry to highlight places that need care and attention.

"We have dedicated time, experience and money to bring back precious places and we are proud to have helped to save them from carelessness, despite the successes, other places continue to fall into ruin.

"They have been added to the Register of this year and we will focus our attention on them for years to come."

Sites added to the Heritage at Risk 2018 registry in Devon include:

Bunksland Farm, East Anstey

Bunksland Farm, East Ansty

This is a farmhouse of medieval origins, adapted over the centuries that has survived almost intact from the early nineteenth century.

The farmhouse is built in panicle, a traditional building material made by mixing local subsoil with straw and water. It was originally built in the early 15th century and remodeled in the late 16th century before being modified in the 19th century.

It has an unusual and impressive roof structure, probably dating back to the 15th century. The outbuildings of the farmhouse include a shippon (or cowshed) built to the east and a 19th-century stone barn to the west.

The building was occupied for the last time in 2009, and now an internal wall and part of the southern wall have collapsed, and the back of the shippon is fractured and unstable, prompting us to add the site to the Quest Log & # 39; year.

We are currently conducting surveys and research and planning emergency work.

City walls of Exeter

The Roman wall of Exeter

The city walls of Exeter include Roman, Anglo-Saxon and medieval sections. The walls were started in 200AD and survive as a rectangular circuit.

The Roman walls were repaired and rebuilt during the Anglo-Saxon, medieval and civil war periods.

The city was a key military target during the first British civil war between King Stephen and the empress Maud, and later in the civil war between realists and parliamentarians.

As a result, Exeter's walls have reflected the need for defense during turbulent times and are a special part of the city's character.

Today the wall survives well and remains a much loved feature of Exeter, but its condition is slowly deteriorating in some areas.

Repair and consolidation is necessary for a section of the wall where the property has been resolved and Historic England is offering to finance 50% of the cost of these jobs to potential owners, as well as contributing to a & # 39; investigation into the condition of the City owned parts of the wall, to help prioritize repairs in future years.

The Ax Boat, Axmouth

The Ax boat dates back to the late 15th or early 16th century. In 2001, changes in the tides revealed the wreck in the limo of a former port.

These wrecks are extremely rare with very few surviving specimens known throughout our coastline.

Its woods are fairly well preserved to reveal the details of the techniques used by medieval ax masters.

The biggest threat to the wreck comes from fluctuating silt levels, as when the dunked wood dries and begins to decay; even the exposed timber is subject to biological attacks.

There is also the risk of accidental damage or loss of historical fabric due to floods, storms and contacts with small boats using the canal.

The Ax boat has been added to the Register this year and we hope it will be possible to understand and register more boats, to get more information about our history of shipbuilding and the medieval mercantile past, while we have the opportunity to do so.

Sites saved in the last year in Devon include:

Belvedere, Powderham

The Powderham Belvedere

The Powderham Belvedere is located northwest of Powderham Castle. It was built between 1771 and 1774 for the 2nd Viscount Courtenay and has established itself as a local landmark for over two centuries; and is still owned by his descendants.

A belvedere is a structure, or part of a building, designed to take advantage of a beautiful view, and this three-story brick tower with Portland stone finishes overlooks the estuary of the exe.

Visitors of the eighteenth century would come to see ships in the water between Topsham and Exmouth, or occasionally enjoy the balls hosted here by the viscount to entertain his 13 daughters.

Used for the first time as a property cottage, after the Second World War, the building was devastated by fire and fell into disrepair.

England historic, natural England and the Teignbridge District Council worked closely with the owners, Charlie and AJ Courtenay, Count and Countess of Devon, through major repairs and renovations.

When repairs are complete, visitors to the Powderham Castle can once again admire the Belvedere, and will return to being an event venue, the purpose for which it was built.

Bolt Tail Fort, South Devon

The Iron Age Cliff Fort at Bolt Tail

The Iron Age Cliff Castle, known as Bolt Tail, is the only known monument of its kind in South Devon. Sitting on a rocky promontory above Hope Cove, it has high sea cliffs on three sides, and the fourth is defended by a moat and a rampart.

The monument was added to the Heritage at Risk Register last year, mainly as a result of significant growth in vegetation, visitor wear and the erosion of livestock on the south side of the fort .

The National Trust Rangers and the volunteers worked hard to solve these problems and in one year they improved the site conditions to the extent that it was removed from the Register.

Although the site is still vulnerable, a management program, implemented through volunteer support, will continue to improve site conditions in the future.

Sites underway in the last year in Devon include:

Battery Knowle, Plymouth

Battery Knowle, Plymouth

One of about 70 forts and batteries built in response to the Royal Commission of 1859, Knowle Battery was intended to protect the nation from an invasion of the French Navy.

These structures became known as follies of Palmerston, after the Prime Minister, because when they finished not only the danger had passed, but their weapons were not updated.

Knowle Battery occupies an important strategic position between two larger forts and protects Plymouth from land attack. The site tells a fundamental part of our nation's military and political history.

It has survived well and part of the site is used by a local elementary school. In good condition, he was about to leave the Heritage at Risk register, until the potential buyer had to retire.

With the right occupant, the site has the potential to start a new chapter with a new use.

Lupton Park, Torbay

The house and the immediate vicinity of Lupton Park are owned by the Lupton Trust, formed ten years ago to bring back this historic house and the garden in use.

The most surprising part of the landscape is the Italian garden – part of the "pleasure gardens" set up around 1840 by the architect George Wightwick, who renovated the house and the garden.

The style of the garden with its walkways and its balustraded geometric terraces was fashionable in the 19th century, and there are examples similar to Cliveden, Castle Howard and Kew. Lupton is very special because it represents a rare survival of a Devon garden project.

The plantation scheme was completed by James Veitch, one of the family who went to found the Chelsea Flower Show. Since the second world war the house has been used as a hotel and school, but now both the house and the garden are considered to be at risk.

Historic England is working with the Trust to support their work to repair and restore the site, and has funded a report on the conditions for the Italian garden and home and garden development work in the area. ;last year. The volunteers helped to record important elements of the historical garden.

The house is already in use for lessons and events, and we hope to see better conditions, while work continues and more and more locals have the opportunity to enjoy this place.


Leave a comment

Send a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.