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Buckerell, or Bokerell (St. Mary)

BUCKERELL, or Bokerell (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Honiton, hundred of Hemyock, Honiton and N. divisions of Devon, 3 miles (W.) from Honiton; containing 360 inhabitants. This place was anciently the property of the Pomeroys, of Bury, and was given, in the reign of John, by Sir Henry Pomeroy to his second son Sir Geoffrey, from whom, by marriage of his descendant in the female line, it was conveyed to the Fulfords and Gwynnes, of Ford Abbey. A hamlet in the parish, now called Weston, but anciently Weringstone, was a manor belonging to Dunkeswell Abbey, and, after the Dissolution, was granted by Henry VIII. to John Drake, merchant. The surface of the parish is intersected by a semicircular ridge of hills; and near Godford Cross is a rill of water, which has its rise under Wulphere Church, so designated from the Saxon chieftain of that name, whose stronghold was Hembury Fort. Hembury-Fort House, originally built by Admiral Graves, was once called Cockenhayes, and a Roman road leading to it is still known as Cockenhay-street; it is situated directly under the ancient fort, and forms an interesting feature in the landscape. Deer Park, which occupies the site of an old lodge and chace, after the Conquest was held by Matthew de Buckington, from whose crest (a buck) and the rill previously noticed, the parish is supposed to have derived its name. The village is pleasantly situated near the banks of the Otter; a pleasure fair is held there on the first Monday in September. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £10. 0. 2½.; patrons, the Dean and Chapter of Exeter; impropriator, J. Northcote, Esq. The vicarial tithes have been commuted for £135. The church is an elegant structure in the later English style, and contains a richly carved oak screen separating the nave from the chancel, some monuments to the family of Admiral Graves, and the Gwynnes of Ford Abbey, and an elegant tablet to the memory of Elizabeth, late wife of the Rev. E. E. Coleridge, the present incumbent, by whom the church, to which an aisle was added in 1839, has been restored and beautified. A vicarage-house was built in 1829. Andrew Buckerell, mayor of London in 1232 and for five successive years, was a native of the parish.

Transcribed from A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858.