Ancient Monuments

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Chapel east of parish church

A Scheduled Monument in Buckfastleigh, Devon

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Latitude: 50.4854 / 50°29'7"N

Longitude: -3.7734 / 3°46'24"W

OS Eastings: 274284.191111

OS Northings: 66568.12413

OS Grid: SX742665

Mapcode National: GBR QG.XVQD

Mapcode Global: FRA 27ZS.3RJ

Entry Name: Chapel E of parish church

Scheduled Date: 23 June 1959

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1002501

English Heritage Legacy ID: DV 370

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Buckfastleigh

Built-Up Area: Buckfastleigh

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Buckfastleigh

Church of England Diocese: Exeter


Medieval chapel in Buckfastleigh churchyard 30m east of the church.

Source: Historic England


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 5 November 2015. This record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

This monument includes a 12th to early 13th century chantry chapel situated in Buckfastleigh churchyard to the east of the church. The chapel survives as a rectangular single celled building measuring approximately 13.7m long by 7m wide internally of which three walls are still partially standing whilst the remainder of the structure is preserved as buried features. The east gable wall is almost complete and is approximately 7m high and 0.75m thick. It has a lower deeply splayed window with dressed stone and some fragmentary painted interior plaster. Above is the lower part of a round window without dressed stone. A partially in-filled piscina is situated on the interior east wall between the window and the south east corner of the building. The southern wall of the chapel is almost complete, standing to a height of approximately 5m. This has a surviving arched doorway, a lancet window and part of a second window. There are also a number of 0.2m square putlog holes. A short standing fragment of the north wall leads from the north east corner of the building and has part of a lancet window. Within the interior of the chapel are several graves dating from the 1800’s to the early 1900’s.
The chapel is listed at Grade II*.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

A medieval chapel is a building, usually rectangular, containing a range of furnishings and fittings appropriate for Christian worship in the pre-Reformation period. Chapels were designed for congregational worship and were generally divided into two main parts: the nave, which provided accommodation for the laity, and the chancel, which was the main domain of the priest and contained the principal altar. Chantry chapels were built and maintained by endowment and were established for the singing of masses for the soul of the founder. Chapels were often abandoned as their communities and supporting finances declined or disappeared. Many chantry chapels disappeared after the dissolution of their supporting communities in the 1540s. Chapels, like parish churches, have always been major features of the landscape. They retain important information about the nature and date of their use up to their abandonment. The chapel in Buckfastleigh churchyard is of an early date and may have had an upper room for a priest or pardoner. Despite having several graves within it, this early building survives comparatively well and the presence of some fragmentary red and yellow painted plaster on the interior walls is a particularly unusual and rare feature. The chapel does not appear to predate the church since parts of the latter are of similar date, but both occupy the same churchyard.

Source: Historic England


PastScape Monument No:-444843

Source: Historic England

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