Wood Farm

A summary of the occupiers of Wood, Bishopsteignton, taken from the official parish records.

Wood House Bishopsteignton
Wood, Bishopsteignton c 1930

Entry from British Listed Buildings 1955

Small country house in use as farmhouse. Circa 1830 with some late C19 alterations but probably incorporating parts of an earlier house in the service block. Architect unknown to date, building designed for the Comyns family who lived at Wood from 1732 to 1957. Colourwashed rendered stone ; slate roof to main range, gabled at ends with sprocketted eaves to the front, 2 span slate roof, half-hipped at the left end to the kitchen block ; end stacks with brick shafts to the main range, front lateral stack to service block. Greek Revival.

Wood is said originally to have been one of the estates of the Bishops of Exeter. It was owned by the Comyns family, major landowners, from the early C18 until 1957.  John Comyns, probably the patron of the rebuilding of the house, was squarson from  1801-1836 (Cleland).

16th Century

1524          The Devon Subsidy Roll lists John Evon of Wode.

1543          The Devon Subsidy Roll lists John Avon of Wode, with a small income from agricultural; it list several other ‘Avon’ names but no Evan or Evon.

1562          The Baptism Register records the baptism of Thomas son of Thomas Hewytt of Wood.

1569          The Devon Muster Roll names John Evan and Thomas Hewet as muster men, without naming their homes.  The former had goods of from £40-£100 value the latter had an income from land of from £20-£40.

1582          The Marriage Register records the marriage between Thomas Hewytt jun. and Margerie Eales of Stadton.

17th Century

1602          The Burial Register records the burial of a son of Thomas Hewytt of Wood.

1611          A Bargain and Sale records the sale of Wood, in possession of Thomas Hewytt, between Nicholas Ducke with William Hakewill and the Duke of Salisbury for £500.

1614          The Burial Register records the burial of Thomas Hewit of Wood.

1615          The Burial Register records the burial of Margery Hewytt, widow of Wood.

1616          The Burial Register records the burial of Thomas Hewytt the elder of Wood on 12 February.

1616          A Bargain and Sale the transfer of Wood to Henry Eastchurch for £731 10s

1625          The Burial Register records the burial of Henry Eastchurch senior of Wood.  Note 1 son and one daughter were buried within a month of Henry’s death.

1674          The Hearth Tax Register shows Mr Eastchurch had six hearths.

1676          The Burial Register records the burial of Henry Eastchurch gent. The son of John Eastchurch gentlemen.

1680          The Burial Register records the burial of John Eastchurch the elder of Wood.

1681          John Eastchurch died this year.  A copy of his will is held at the Devon Records Office.   This was the Elder John Eastchurch.

1681          After the deaths of John Eastchurch elder and junior, Wood was sold to Moses Gould to pay off the state debts, according to Cleland.

18th Century

1703          A record of Sale and Bargain shows that Sir Thomas Lear bought Wood.  He died in 1705 and Wood was inherited by Sir John Lear.

1706          The Churchwardens’ records show that Sir John Lear was churchwarden for Wood.

1736          The list of Sir John Lear’s debts show that Thomas Comyns was tenant of ‘the Barton of Wood with several closes’.

1737          Sir John Lear was buried and Wood passed to Thomas Comyns by virtue of his wife who was Sir John’s daughter, Mary.

1759          The will of Thomas Comyns of Wood esq. who died aged 63 is held in the Devon Records Office.

1771          The Baptism Register records the baptism of Mary Lear the daughter of Thomas Comyns esq. and Joanna of Wood.

1776          The Burial Register records the burial of Thomas Comyns Esq. of Wood aged 45 of Gout.

1789          An Apprenticeship document shows that William Wickes is apprenticed to William Towell for Wood Estate.

1792          The Land Tax Assessment lists John Comyns as owner of Wood Barton and Wm. Towell as occupier.

1797          The Burial Register records the burial of Miss Jane Pidsley sister to Mrs Comyns of Wood.

1799          The Burial Register records the burial of Joanna Comyns of Wood aged 63.

1799          An Apprenticeship document shows that Mary Wyett is apprenticed to William Towill for Wood.

19th Century

1817          In an indenture of Sale, John Comyns and Maria his wife agree to sell Wood Barton to John Every of Exeter, consisting of 208 acres together with the dwelling house.

1824          An Indenture for sale show the sale of Wood to John Cove and John Pidsley by Nicholas Brand.

1838          An Indenture of Sale shows the sale of Wood to John Comyns by John Pidsley and Elizabeth Cove.

1839          In the Tithe Commutation, The Barton and Farm of Wood in Bishopsteignton contains 230 acres.

1851          Kelly’s Directory shows the occupant of Wood as the Reverend John Comyns.

1866          Kelly’s Directory shows the occupant of Wood as Henry Mapleton M.D.

1868          The Baptism Register records the baptism of a child of W H Harris and his wife, Maria Sophia.

1870          Morris’ Directory shows the occupant of Wood as William Harris Esq.

1873          Kelly’s Directory shows the occupant of Wood as James Wotton who is bailiffs the Comyns estate.

1890          White’s Directory has no mention of Wood.

1897          Kelly’s Directory shows the occupant of Wood as Jas. Wotton.

1897          A shooting lease for the estate shows the tenant at  Wood House as J Wotton and the acreage as 20.

20th Century

1902          Kelly’s Directory shows the occupants of wood as Jas. Wotton and Geo. Yonge Comyns.

1907          The Baptism Register records the baptism of a child of Capt. Archibald Peile Stoddart R.N. and his wife Mary Agnes.

1914          Kelly’s Directory shows the occupant of Wood as Rear Admiral Archibald Peile Stoddart R.N.

1919          Kelly’s Directory shows the occupant of Wood as the Reverend Geo. Yonge Comyns.  This is repeated in years 1926 and 1939.

1955          Property Grade II Listed.

About 1970 Wood was sold to Mr Discombe, senior of Wolsgrove on the death of Rev. Comyns.

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