Thursday, 14 October 2010

Travelling "home"

By the way, the new header photograph is taken in Totnes too, being a view of the Rivert Dart just below where my Brown ancestors were living in the 1840s.

My eldest daughter smiling at the sign on the fish shop! The joys of walking the back streets of a town. This was in Ticklemore Street.

From Bovey Tracey we drove down to the South Hams, to Totnes, where I wanted to do some family history research. It's a few years since we were last there, when we were on holiday and stayed at Stoke Gabriel - which we later discovered was where my Bow ancestors originated, being mentioned in parish records from the 1600s onwards.

Some of them then moved to nearby Berry Pomeroy, and Littlehempston, and by the time my grandmother and her sister were born in the 1890s, they were living in Totnes, and many other family members were nearby.

I spent some time this week researching where they were living - or rather, trying to pinpoint where those houses and pubs were in present-day Totnes. The Lord Nelson, below, was where my Rogers branch of the family was living in the 1891 census. I should imagine it has changed little over the years. I will post more photographs tomorrow.

Of course we couldn't resist a thorough wander round the town, and it was every bit as nice as we remembered it.

Tucked away off the main street are such architectural gems as this beautiful building with its Gothic windows

A very famous Totnes view . . .

This old shop would have been very familiar to my gran, who was born in Totnes in the 1890s.

I took a photo of this side of the memorial, as there are Scobles in a branch of my family tree.

Many hours of dedicated sewing went into making this beautiful quilt, which hangs at the back of St Mary's Church and encompasses Totnes' history.

Here is a glimpse of the past in the sumptiousness of the gold-painted carved pillars of the rood screen. You can just see the Harvest Festival decoration of local apples.

A close-up of the apples which were tucked in between the uprights looking through the rood screen towards the alter, with its beautifully-embroidered alter-cloth.

One of the lovely old houses in Totnes (still Fore Street I think). You can just see the date of 1585 carved into the decoration across the front of the house, so Ann Ball lived in a brand new house at the time of her marriage.

Walking home to the car, the late afternoon sun.


  1. Wonderful photos! I now fancy a day trip to Totnes, haven't been for a couple of years. Such a lovely town.

  2. It has such a lovely atmosphere - and as a transition town, stands for what I believe in too. The folks are so friendly and it was just like returning home. We bought local cheese and cider - wish we'd doubled the amount!

  3. How lovely. My new windows are coming from Totnes, the chap told me the town is often referred to as "Glastonbury-on-sea".

  4. I love totnes, have you been to willows - a lovely restaurant at the top of the high street x

  5. Oh yes, BB, I can see why you wish to go back to Devon alright.

  6. I've so enjoyed these pictures and it's quite a toss up between Totnes and Hennock. I guess we need to start making plans, haha! It will all come together for you dear, don't worry about that.

    I love the kitties too, your Jarvis is so like my little Ainsel was. I can feel the pull of new kitties and your pictures are making me worse :D