Looking towards The Old Vicarage from the A30  
Ancestral Searches
Classified Ads
Holiday Lets
Home Page
Internet Links
Messages / News
Neighbourhood Plan
Neighbourhood Watch
Parish Council
Time Wasters
Update Log
Village Hall
Walkers' Guide
World Wars
Yarcombe Inn
Yarcombe Voices
Young Farmers' Club

Ancestral Searches

Send details by email to the Administrator.  (You may include photographs)


Click on photographs to enlarge in a separate window.   To reply, click on enquirer's name.


Ancestral Search 16

July 2019

Hello.   I am asking if you can help with a bit of tracing on the maternal side of my family tree.

As you see my name is Angus Passmore.   My maternal grandfather was Alfred Samuel Lawrence born it appears in Yarcombe around 1883/84, his father was Alfred Richard Lawrence and his mother Rhoda or Rodha (as it appears on the 1861 Census).   It would seem that my grandfather may have been born outside marriage as the birth is registered in both names?   Rodha was born in Yarcombe around 1850/51.   Her mother (my GGGGM) was Charlotte Spiller born 1820/21 again in Yarcombe, she is listed as widow in 1861 Census.   Rodha it appears had two sisters and one brother.   In addition there are three other males listed on the Census, two of their job descriptions would indicate farm workers.   Unfortunately the address is unclear but the last word could be “farm” but that is only an educated guess.

Any information would be gratefully received.


Angus Passmore

(07834 547406)

Steve Horner writes:   Your enquiry on the Yarcombe web site is most interesting and I am certain we can help you. 

The entry in the  1861 can be read as follows

Livenhayes farm:

Charlotte Spiller aged 41 Widow farmer of 20 acres employing I man and 2 boys born Churchstanton

Rhoda daughter aged 10

Thomas son aged 4

Thomas son aged 2
William Locke  aged 77 Boarder (in fact Charlotte`s  father)
William Pavey  aged 18
William Locke  aged 20 Cattle man

Please see these pages from Ruth Everitt`s history of Yarcombe “From Monks to the Millennium“:      

Livenhayes farm house is a most wonderful old building which has recently been sold.   At that time it was owned by Lord Heathfield and thus Charlotte was a tenant farmer.   Charlotte seems to have been a most redoubtable lady who lived to a great age and who married on several occasions.   There are still several Spillers living hereabouts.   She was born on 21st May 1820 in Churchstanton Devon - a neighbouring parish to Yarcombe - daughter to William Locke and Betty?   I think her first marriage was to ? Sparke in Honiton in the 1st quarter of 1846.   However her first husband must have died quite soon after this marriage and she then married Thomas Spiller on the 3rd June 1851 in the Parish of Wilton Somerset. 

We can then deduce from the 1871 census she was married to Robert Edwards aged 70:       

She was still living at Livenhayes in 1891 with Robert's three children and two of her own, Naomi and Thomas.   I suspect that this marriage to Robert Edwards took place in Exeter in the 2nd quarter of 1862.   She was still living at Livenhayes in 1891.   She possibly died in 1894. 

Now turning to the Lawrence side of the family, Alfred Richard Lawrence married Rhoda Spiller in 1871 and in the 1871 census they were living in Combe St Nicholas.   In the 1881 census they were living in North Common Cottage Yarcombe (just below my farm) with three children, Pamela 7, Elizabeth 5, and Ernest 3.   In the 1891 census only Alfred is mentioned (I assume Rhoda had died by this date) with his children Pamela 17, Ernest 13, and Samuel aged 7, a perfect fit with your suggestion.   He was born in about 1883 but I would warrant he was not born outside the marriage!   Do you have a copy of his birth certificate for me to examine please? 

Altogether a fascinating part of our village history.   I do hope that this is helpful.

Angus Passmore responds:   Thank you very much for your detailed response, you have filled in a lot of blanks in regards to my ancestors.   I think it may well warrant a visit to Yarcombe in the near future.   Incidentally a long time ago we lived in Dunkeswell without being aware of how close it was to the family history.   Alfred Lawrence my grandfather married a Seaton girl Alice Stembridge who was the daughter of Sam (Long Service RN) and Emelia (Nee Bull, a Crewkerne family).   Alfred went on to fight and survive WW1 as a Royal Engineer in Mesopotamia, after which he became a builder in Seaton and constructed several properties that still exist in Seaton.   He eventually died of Addison’s disease potentially triggered we think by Malaria contracted during WW1.

Thanks again for all you help.

Ancestral Search 15

May 2019

Hi, very impressed with your site and your ancestry pages.

My great grandparents x 4, Hugh Pavey and Joan Trenchard were married at Yarcombe on the 23rd June, 1797.   They had two children William and Frances Pavey (my great grandmother x 3).   Frances was baptised in Yarcombe on the 3rd August, 1800.    Any information that you may have about Hugh Pavey or his family would be greatly appreciated.  

I have already been considerably assisted by Michael Haynes with the Trenchard family following his earlier post on your ancestry pages.  

Many thanks, 

David Thomas

Steve Horner writes:   I will be very pleased to help you in any way possible with your researches.   Let me begin by explaining that we are very fortunate in Yarcombe because much of the land in the parish has been in the hands of one family since the time of Sir Francis Drake who started accumulating land hereabouts since 1582.   The estate records were deposited in the Devon County Records office in about 1950 and thus remain as a source of our knowledge, and from which my dear departed friend Ruth Everitt was able to compile her book "From Monks to the Millennium".  

I therefore attach a scan (below) of the relevant pages of this history which contain references to the Pavey family and their land holdings. The first mention is of one Charles Pavey who was occupier of Broadley in 1600 so your family have been well embedded in this area for many generations. 

Let me know if I can further assist you, sight of your tree might give me some more clues.



  Document 1   Document 2  

David Thomas replies:   Thank you so much for the very prompt response and the useful information provided. We have a lot to be grateful to Ruth Everitt for and people like you who are happy to share the knowledge of past records with others.

Ancestral Search 14

February 2019

Hi what a great site, thank you.   I'm currently researching Pattimore and Dommett.   I have a marriage certificate for James Pattimore and Caroline Dommett, married in 1892 in Yarcombe church.   Any information regarding either would be fantastic thank you.

Mandy Trimby

Steve Horner writes:   Thank you for visiting the Yarcombe web site.   Like you, we are keen to learn more about those who have lived in our village.   I can immediately provide you with two documents (below) that will help trace your ancestors.  

  Document 1 Document 2  

The first is an extract from the record of Baptism in Otterford church.   Caroline was baptised 16th July 1871, daughter of Thomas (a cobbler) and Louisa (? poor writing) Dommett.   The second is a copy of the 1881 census for Yarcombe.   Caroline is shown as living in Marsh - a hamlet in the parish of Yarcombe - with her mother, Louisa (now a widow) and her five siblings.   Her father Thomas must have died within the previous two years - James her brother is aged 1.   Her mother Louisa is shown as having been born in Buckland St Mary, an adjacent Parish in Somerset to Otterford.   Yarcombe is also adjacent to Otterford but across the border in Devon. 

At this stage I cannot find any more about Caroline.   However if you can scan and send her marriage certificate to me  I can carry out more research for you into her husband James Pattimore. 

Incidentally how are you related to Caroline ?

Mandy Trimby replies:   Thank you so much for that.   Caroline was my great grandmother.   I know she died at the young age of 43 in Taunton and James her husband was a coal porter in Taunton.   Not sure how they ended up here though.   I believe the witnesses were Fowler.   Can't seem to find a birth certificate for James although he is in the workhouse in 1871 and 1881.   Thank again for all your help.   (Marriage Certificate below.)

  Document 3  

 Steve Horner responds:   Yes, you are correct - James was in the Union workhouse as a child in Chard in 1881 (document 5).   The mention of Union confirms that Caroline who lived in Union no5 in Marsh, that this was also a workhouse.   In 1871 (document 4) he was living in Crewkerne with his mother Sarah Jane Pattimore.   He was aged 4 at the time and was born in Crewkerne.   No sign of his father Simeon who perhaps had died?

I thought you may be interested to see the 1911 census  (document 6)

I guess you know the rest of your tree.   If I find any further record of the Dommett family in Otterford I will let you know.

  Document 4 Document 5 Document 6  


Ancestral Search 13

December 2018


My name is Clare Evans. I am descended from the Spiller family in Yarcombe and more recently in Taunton.   My mother’s name was Heather Jean Spiller.   I have started researching the Spiller family history and have got as far back as Robert Spiller, 1579-1617 of Yarcombe.   His wife was Margere Colliar, 1583-1614.   If you have any more information on this family, I would be very grateful to receive it.   There is a family story that indicates that the Spillers may have come from the Low Countries as Huguenots, for religious reasons. 

I would like to find a copy of the local history book, if this is available.

Clare Evans


Steve Horner writes:   The Spiller family are one of the prominent names in the history of our Parish and there are still members of the family living hereabouts.

I had a quick look in the book From Monks to the Millennium for early references to your family and right is a scan for your information which shows Zachary Spiller  who left his properties of North Waterhayne and Crimshayes to his wife Alice.

This suggest to me that the author of the book Ruth Everitt must have found a copy of his will in the Devon County Records office or in the National Archives in Kew, I am not certain if there is a connection to your branch of the family.

I also looked on Ancestry.com - of which I am a member - and noted that your family tree is there on open access.   The father of your Robert Spiller (1579-1617) was  John Spiller born Yarcombe 1528. married in 1578 and died in Yarcombe 1582.

From the above points it is obvious to me that the Spiller family were classed as Gentry in those far off days and must have taken a important  part in the development of our community.   You may also be aware that Sir Francis Drake has a very close connection to our parish so your ancestors were alive when Queen Elizabeth rewarded Sir Frances with land in the parish in 1582.

I would be delighted to assist further with your researches, however it will need a stroke of luck to go further back than the birth of John Spiller in 1528.

The book I refer to Monks and the Millennium is now out of print but does occasionally show up on Amazon.

I hope this helps, however if you do find yet more information about the Spiller family please post this on our web site.

Good luck!



Clare Evans replies: Thank you so much for your very informative e-mail. This has been of great interest to me and my family.   I will try to pursue this further and intend to contact the Huguenot Society in order to try to establish whether the family came from the Low Countries originally.   If I find out anything further, I will let you know.   I would also like to visit Yarcombe and to see the house that Zachary Spiller left to his wife Alice.

Steve Horner responds:   Delighted that we are able to help you.   I have just looked up the derivation of the name Spiller:

English: occupational name for a tumbler or jester, from an agent derivative of Middle English spill(en) ‘to play, jest, or sport’ (Old English spilian). English: nickname for a destructive or wasteful person, from an agent derivative of the homonymous Middle English spill(en) ‘to spoil, waste, or squander’ (Old English spillan). German and Dutch: occupational name for a spindle maker, a variant of Spille with the addition of the agent suffix -er. In some cases a variant of German Spieler.

North Waterhayne farm, which Zachary Spiller left to his wife Alice, now belongs to the Sheafhayne Estate and the tenancy is due to change at the end of March which may give you an opportunity to look over the house at that time - if I can help please let me know.   I also strongly recommend that you obtain a copy of the Will of Zachary Spiller from the Devon County records office.   I set out below a copy of the Index of Wills held in Exeter - if you do obtain a copy I would be most interested to make a copy for my own records.











Vol. 31

AJP Skinner bequest 1934



Honyton [Honiton]











Type of Document: 'W' - Will, 'A' - Administration, 'I' - Inventory, 'O' - Other

Form of Document: 'or' - Original, 'co' - Copy, 'ab' - Abstract or Extract, 'tr' - Transcript, 'le' - List Entry 

Please let me know if I can help further.



Ancestral Search 12

August 2018


I stumbled upon your excellent site whilst researching the Mullett family tree.   They were resident at Whitehorns and Beacon farms.   I see there was a Mullett mentioned in the memorial to those who lost their lives in WW1 in the Baptist church on the site.   My father is registered as being born 3rd June 1919 at Beacon farm Yarcombe.   My grandfather William Mullett (married to Grace Wakley) is registered as resident Beacon farm in 1911 census.   The 1891 & 1901 census shows the Mullett family as registered at Pithayne Cottage.   The 1861 shows my great grandfather Charles Mullett (married to Sarah Miller) registered at the Mill in Yarcombe.   Evidently the Mulletts were long term residents of Yarcombe but I cannot figure out the relationship between the people and all these different residences.   I have tried to track down a copy of the book, "From Monks to the Millenium" but it is out of print.   I hope you can help. 

Kind regards,

Chris Mullett


Steve Horner writes:   Here is a map (click to enlarge) of our Parish identifying the various house/cottages where your family lived in Yarcombe.   Yes you are correct, there is a W Mullett mentioned on the Baptist Chapel memorial, however this is an indication he served King and Country, he is not recorded as “Our Brave Dead”.   This may be your Grandfather William Mullett ????   Can you check the spelling of Grace Wakley please, it is confusing there are two  families with different spellings Wakley and Wakely in our records.   Just out of interest do you know when your family left the village ?

Steve Horner adds:   Let me start with some historical background for you; a large part of Yarcombe parish was and still is  held by one family, which started when Queen Elizabeth 1 presented to Sir Francis Drake a part of the Manor.   The estate grew under careful management by Sir Frances` indirect  descendants – Sir Frances did not have children.   Whitehorns was part of the estate until it was sold with other properties in 1931 when the sitting tenant Mr F Mullett purchased the property.   Up until about 1880 Whitehorns was an outlying part of the adjoining Parish of Membury which does cause confusion!   In more recent times the Yarcombe Estate repurchased Whitehorns which is a beautiful thatched house nestling in a quiet valley.   Please see the map (right) which indicates the properties where your relatives lived.   I do hope we shall have more details about your family to post into our web site.

Joan Berry writes:   I think that  Thomas Wakely may have been a relative of my Godfather (George Wakely, who was a Thatcher)  but unfortunately I know nothing of his family apart from the fact that they were connected to the Mullet family of Whitehorns Farm.


Steve Horner adds:   Below is a scan of the 1901 census covering Whitehorns which shows the Yarcombe Wakelys in residence.   Up until about 1880 Whitehorns was an outlying area of Membury Parish.   The Walter Wakely I am researching came into Yarcombe from Otterford and thus I suspect not connected to your family –all very confusing but very interesting none the less.

1901 Census

Miranda Gudenian writes:   Chris Mullett may be interested to know that one of his family, Bill Mullett, owned the house I now live in, The Beacon (as it became known in the 1970s).  I would have to check our deeds but I think the house was sold after Mr Mullett's death in the early or mid-1950s.

Miranda Gudenian adds:   If my memory serves me correctly Bill Mullett lived in one half of the house - which was turned into two cottages when the Estate bought the place in the late 19th century - and he let the other half.   Again if my memory is correct Bill Mullett purchased the house in 1931 in the Estate sale of properties.   Both Bill (Boy) Doble and Frank Wale remembered Bill Mullett.

Kirth Gensen writes:   I've been going through several boxes of stuff I’ve inherited from my eldest brother and found this pamphlet and press cuttings about Yarcombe:

  The Yarcombe Story Cutting 1 Cutting 2 Cutting 3 Cutting 4  


Steve Horner replies:   Thanks a million for all this information about our Parish.   There is a lady in the village called Barbara Salter who remembers Mr Mullett from Whitehorns, and the processional cross for which he donated the wood is still in use in the church.   The booklet is also most interesting.   Barbara tells me that the author was Freddie Orchard who was the organist in the church in about 1969/70 and that Bishop John Armstrong, who had  hand in the research for the booklet, was Vicar of Yarcombe at that time and was previously Bishop of Bermuda.   This enabled me to trace Freddie Orchard through a genealogy web site, and I came up with the following information:


Frederick Theodore A Orchard was a school master who was born on the 1st January 1904 and died in Honiton in the second quarter of 1982.   His wife Gwendoline Mary Orchard was born on 9th December 1903 and is buried in the Yarcombe churchyard.   Bishop John Armstrong was obviously quite a character.   He was a chaplain in the Royal  Navy for 28 years and rose to be Chaplain of the Fleet and served in this position from 1960-1963.   Immediately upon his retirement from the Royal Navy he was consecrated Bishop of Bermuda in 1963 where he served until 1970.   It can be assumed he then retired to Yarcombe where he was the Parish Priest for some years.   He died in 1992.   Barbara told me he was very high church but “we soon put him right about those practices !“



I also attach (right, click to enlarge) a photo of your family gravestone in Yarcombe churchyard which you may find interesting.


Please keep in contact and if you require any further information I shall be pleased to help.


Ancestral Search 11

July 2018


What a find – the records of Yarcombe.   I have traced the ancestors of the Trenchards from Sampford Moor in Somerset (my great grandparents) back to one John Trenchard in Yarcombe.   I have approx dates of his birth, namely 1700, and death approx 1788, with records of his marriage to Mary Satterley m 14/2/1737, marriage to Sarah Spiller, m 30/10/1753, and finally, possibly, Elizabeth Board, m 5 Feb 1788.   Although I have some dates of birth and death for these ladies, I would appreciate it please if you could provide these accordingly.   Also their parentage. 

My biggest search however is for John Trenchards parents etc, as he is the last one my tree.

Michael Haynes

Steve Horner writes:   I have had a quick look at your enquiry.   Trenchard is not a name which can readily be associated with the Parish of Yarcombe in East Devon.   The records show John Trenchard did marry Mary Spiller - a local name - on 30th October 1753 - John's third wife.   Have you tried looking at the Trenchard family of Charminster?    Sorry I cannot help further, however if  you have other clues please let me know.

Michael Haynes replies:   Thank you for your recent reply expressing interest in what I have found out about Yarcombe Trenchards.   I have attached a file (see below), which I hope you can open giving data on John Tenchard from 1700 down to the latter Trenchards from Yarcombe.   If this works for you then I can put together more family descendants, who are not part of my ancestral tree, but nevertheless come from Yarcombe.   Please let me know if you would like me to repeat the exercise for the other Trenchards.


Ancestral Search 10

June 2018

I am researching my husband’s family and have just found the Yarcombe web page with all the interesting information it contains.  I was particularly interested in the Ancestral Searches page and the reply comments by Steve Horner to Lefayre Palmer’s enquiries regarding the Spiller family ( Ancestral Search 6 ).

My husband is Lyndon Spiller and below I give details of his family tree as far as we have been able to ascertain.    


Timon (alt Tymon) Spiller 1743 – 1804   Yarcombe


+ Sarah Moore 1729-1795


...... Abraham Spiller 1765 – 1834   Yarcombe


...... + Elizabeth Clarke 1772-1842


............ Naboth Spiller 1802-1878  Yarcombe – died in Rose Cottage Chard


............ Eliza Knight 1816-1905


.................. Naboth Spiller 1845-1918  Combe St Nicholas died in Clyst St George


.................. Mary Warren 1851-1906


........................ Willliam John Spiller 1885 – 1975  Wandsworth Common/Clyst St George/Canada/ New Zealand/died in Melbourne, Aus


........................ + Ruby Baker 1881-1977


.............................. William Clarence Spiller 1918- 2010  Melbourne Australia


.............................. +Nada Veronica Tasker Burr 1916-2003


.................................... Lyndon Stuart Spiller 1945-     Australia


.................................... +Julie Lynette King 1947 –


I note that Timon and Abraham Spiller are listed in the Index to From Monks to The Millennium and wonder if it is possible to gain any further information about any of our  family members. 

Any help that you can give will be really appreciated. 

Yours sincerely, 

Julie Spiller

Steve Horner writes:   Once again I am delighted to be able to try to help you.   There are still a good number of Spillers living hereabouts, however I strongly suspect their knowledge of the ancestors does not go back more than one or two generations!   It would certainly be a coup if we could find a Yarconian (or is it a Yarcombite?) who is related to one of the Pilgrim Fathers.   Do you have a copy of ”From Monks to the Millennium”?   If you do not please look at the index to any particular Spiller and I will scan the entry for you.

Julie Spiller replies:   Thanks for your prompt response.   No, I do not have a copy of the book but note that Abraham Spiller and Timon Spiller are both listed.   Amy Spiller could be Abraham’s daughter and there is also a Robert – but then there were so many Roberts in the church register that it could be any one of them.   I am currently working my way through the register and finding that there were so many Spillers listed as well families who married into the Spiller clan.   If you could scan a copy of relevant information for Abraham and Timon it may give me some background information.   Unfortunately we will not be any help with your dream of finding someone who is related to the Pilgrim Fathers.   Our grandfather left England later and finally settled in Australia – which is where we are living – even though my email may suggest USA.

Steve Horner replies:   See Documents 1 to 4, below.   One reason that we know so much about our local history is that most of the land in the Parish belongs to one family, who are descended from Sir Francis Drake of Armada fame, and this family or perhaps their lawyers presented all the estate records to the Devon County Record Office.   From a quick glance your family appear to have Baptist connections.   The Baptist Chapel is still a thriving congregation.   If I can help further please let me know.



Document 1

Document 2

Document 3

Document 4


Julie Spiller replies:   Thanks for the help on the Spiller family.  It has been most useful.  The information on Brimbley, Broadly and Livenhayes was most interesting.   I am now following down the families of the wives of the Spillers.   Abraham Spiller married Elizabeth Clarke – daughter of Naboth Clarke.  I am wondering if your helpful book – or any other source - has information on Naboth Clarke or any other members of that family.   Naboth Clarke and Elizabeth Stickland married in April 1770 at Yarcombe.  I believe that Naboth and Elizabeth had at least seven children - Elizabeth, James, Richard, Mary, Grace, James and Sarah between 1772 and 1781.   I believe that Naboth died around 1784.   Elizabeth Stickland’s parents were John Stickland and Mary (?Dean).   Abraham’s son Naboth Spiller married Elizabeth or Eliza Knight daughter of James and Elizabeth Knight.  I note that on page 50 there is reference to James Knight being one of those who were trustees of the Yarcombe Baptist Church in 1854.   Any further information you may have on any of these will be really appreciated.

Steve Horner replies:   I am delighted to be able to help you.   Herewith information on Naboth Clarke, Document 5, below.   The author of the book, Ruth Everitt spent time in the Devon Records Office so the letter which provided her with this information must be on file.   Also information on John Stickland of Moorpit farm, Document 6, who is almost certainly one of your forebears.   Document 7 is another Stickland but dated 1832.   Your reference on page 50 is to James Knight  Marsh Chapel - Marsh being a hamlet in Yarcombe Parish - this chapel was closed in the 1970s.   I am not certain where the original Charter  can be found, perhaps in the records of Yarcombe Baptist church.   If you can provide me with further details of Naboth Spiller marriage to Eliza Knight I will further research this line for you.   The name Spiller is very common in these parts.   I look forward to hearing from you again.



Document 5

Document 6

Document 7



Ancestral Search 9

June 2018

I am researching my maternal family side of the family tree.   My grandmother Harriet Carter, according to census records was born in Yarcombe in 1905.   Her father was called Jabez Carter, her mother was Bessie, and she had two sisters Eva Dorothy and May and one brother Frederick George who are also recorded as having being born in Yarcombe.

I wondered if anyone knew where the Carter family lived in the village and any other interesting information about the Carter family.

Thank you for your assistance,

Ana Collingridge

Peter Tarrant writes:   Dick and Dorothy Carter passed away some time ago but lived in a small cottage called Cornhill, on a road to the south off the A30.   If this turns out to be relevant I can point out some photos of the building on the Photographs pages.   The new owner has made (and is still making) extensive changes since, though.   I have alerted our local expert Steve Horner, so you may hear from him soon.


Ancestral Search 8

January 2018

Hi, my name is Jennie.   I have been doing research into my family tree and am looking for any help that anyone may be able to give me.   I am currently trying to find any information on the Lenthal family of Yarcombe in Devon.   I know that Ann Lenthal was  born in 1734 and my 6 times Great Grandmother.   She died in 1829 in Yarcombe.   I know that she married John Loosemore of the same parish born 1730.   I am looking for information on her parents.   I believe that her mother's name may have been Jane.   I have a rare genetic variant called G-Norfolk and am trying to trace my ancestry as it means that I am of Mediterranean and African origin.   I am wondering if the Lenthal family may be the key to solving the mystery.

 Thank You, 

Jennie Brock

Steve Horner replies:   I cannot help on Lenthal side, however it would appear that the Loosemore connection I may have more positive information.   There is a farm in the northern part of our Parish, called Northam’s which has belonged to the Yarcombe Estate for many generations – the estate was founded by Sir Francis Drake.   In 1798 the Tenant was John Loosemore  and between 1810-1832 the tenant was James Loosemore.

If you can send me a link to the Yarcombe lineage of your family I may be able to help further, indeed you may wish to see a map of the parish which I will willingly send to you. 

There is one other clue with which I may be able to assist.   In 1580 the Zane family lived in the house I now own and it is believed this family originated in Venice.   Perhaps this may be where your genetic G-Norfolk gene came from?   Who knows – it’s a long shot.



Ancestral Search 7

January 2018

I have just come across this site and wonder if you can help me find out who my Great Great Grandmother's parents were.   Her name was Sarah Vincent from Yarcombe - she married William Hodges on 21/2/1821 at Ruishton.   I found the Marriage Certificate but there were only two names as witnesses - Abraham Grabham and Harriet Hobby, so a bit of a dead end.   These names are not in  the Hodges family as far as I know.   My maiden name was Hodges.

It’s a bit of a long shot but maybe if there are any Vincents still around there who possibly did some research I would love to hear about  it.


J Hignell


Ancestral Search 6

November 2017

I am researching my Spiller family of Yarcombe Devon and have just come across the wonderful publication of Yarcombe Voices.  It is wonderful to learn of people who endeavour to keep alive the history of their community.

The earliest Spiller I have is one born in 1553 in Yarcombe.   He had a son Robert whose son William married Joane Warren, daughter of Edmund Warren and Mary Warren.   I am coming across pedigrees taking Mary back to Richard Warren a Mayflower Pilgrim.   I am descended from Jane on the attached file (reproduced below).   It would be lovely if I could be in contact with any Spiller or Warren descendants still in Yarcombe and to discover if any of them have any knowledge of a supposed descent from Richard Warren who went to America as a Mayflower pilgrim.

Having also discovered the web site Yarcombe.net I am impressed with this great and wonderfully presented source of information regarding the home of my ancestors.

In grateful anticipation of any help you are able to afford me.


Lefayre Palmer nee Heslehurst

My ancestry comes to me through my paternal grandmother Laura Elizabeth Heslehurst nee Wilkinson.

Outline Descendant Report for William Spiller:

  1 William Spiller (1572 - ) B: 1572  
  + Elizabeth Gammmon  
  ...... 2 William Spiller (1614 - ) B: 1614  
  ...... + Joane Warren  
  ............ 3 Simon Spiller (1655 - ) B: 1655  
  ............ + Elizabeth Newberry ( - 1696) D: 1696  
  .................. 4 Thomas Spiller (1693 - ) B: 1693  
  .................. + Honor /Robert Weard ( - 1794) D: 1794  
  ........................ 5 Robert Spiller (1747 - ) B: 1747, M: 1767  
  ........................ + Mary Clarke (1748 - ) B: 1747/48, M: 1767  
  .............................. 6 Jane Spiller (1798 - 1870) B: 1798, M: 1815 in Charles Church, Plymouth, Devon,  

D: 1870 in Ford Park, the Barbican, Plymouth, Devon

  .............................. + William Reburn (1792 - 1872) B: 1792 in Liskeard, Cornwall, England,  

M: 1815 in Charles Church, Plymouth, Devon  D: 1872 in Ford Park, the Barbican, Plymouth, Devon




Steve Horner writes:   I have just read your note posted on our website and in this message I will try and give you some initial information about Yarcombe which has a rich and interesting history.   There are indeed members of the Spiller family still living in our Parish and the Parish records are littered with reference to them, but as far as I am aware not one mention of the Warren family.  

There is a very good book that records the history of Yarcombe, "From Monks to The Millennium" written by Ruth Everitt which I helped her compile and from which the document (right) is scanned.   The scan of the index demonstrates the multitude of references in the book to the Spiller family and if you spot a particular name of interest I would be pleased to send you more information. 

Basically our community is a rural parish in East Devon comprising about 500 persons in widely scattered farms.   The ownership of much of the Parish goes back to the time of Sir Francis Drake whom as a reward for helping Queen Elizabeth 1 was given tracts of land hereabouts and the ownership has remained in the same family, but not direct descendants, ever since.   I have also spotted the name Newberry which family also owned land in the south of the parish in the 17th century. 

You have hit upon a rich vein of history and if I can I will assist you further.   I would appreciate some more background of your own family and of course the important connection to The Mayflower Pilgrims.




Ancestral Search 5



I am hoping that someone out there could give me any information about my grandmother's family the Paull's of Yarcombe.   Any help would be gratefully received.   I have several photos of the Paull family, particularly of my great great grandfather (pictured left) on an early 1900s postcard with the caption printed on the front "Yarcombe's oldest parishioner".   The Paull's were connected to several other Yarcombe families such as the Bright, Harris and Vincent family.

Ellen Hawkins (nee Harris) is connected to the Paull line via the Harris family. My great grandmother was Mary Jane Harris (married to Thomas Paull).   Not exactly sure what relation that would make Ellen to me, but we are connected somewhere along the line.

Alan Bartlett


James Paull, 1824-1914


Sep 2017

Hawkins family Stockhouse Yarcombe   Hawkins family details   Ellen Hawkins Stockhouse Yarcombe

Steve Horner writes:   I have had a quick look at the census records and in 1911 James Paull was living in Crislands which is a cottage about ½ mile from the centre of the village.   According to the 1901 census he was living in Webble Green just across the Yarcombe Parish border In Membury.   The photos you sent are quite exceptional especially of the pig cull, all the family obviously taking part - my guess is that the photo was taken in about 1900.   I do not recognise the farm , so I suspect it may be in Membury - I will make enquiries.

I know an Accountant who lives in Chard called Ed Paull, perhaps he is a relation?   The name Paull with a double ll is perhaps unusual.   Do you have any knowledge of your family tree?

Alan Bartlett replies:   Thank you very much for the info, Steve.   The Paull family are definitely more connected to Membury than Yarcombe, but like you said, the border between the parishes is very close.   I have done a fair bit of research into the family history.   The family has some connection to a few Yarcombe families through marriages.   I had a chance to have a look at the gravestones in Yarcombe churchyard and noticed several family names that I regonised (Bright, Harris, Hawkins, Vincent etc).   If you have access, you may care to have a look at my Spurway family tree on ancestry.co.uk.   Interesting to hear about someone in Chard with the name Paull.   The double L not being all that common, so I would definitely we must be related some where along the line.

The photo of the pigs being cut up is a great picture, so amazingly clear so that you can see incredible detail. (like the water running from tap into the tub in the background).   They definitely weren't a family of vegetarians ... again many thanks.


This photo is a bit of a mystery.   Does anybody know where this was taken?   I assume this is a farm building. Is it in Yarcombe or perhaps Membury?   Who are the people in the picture?   Does anybody know who they are or where it was taken?   It has always intrigued me...even if nobody recognises it, it is still a great photo showing life in days gone by.

Alan Bartlett




Ancestral Search 4



My name is Gary Brennan; my mother's name was Millicent Loosemore, born to John Loosemore who was born in Yarcombe in 1865.   I came here recently to retrace his steps to moving to the USA and in the hope of getting in touch with any other Loosemores in our clan in the area.   If you know any and they would like to find out about John, please would you ask them to email me at:

garyb1956@comcast.net or 1(559)351-6165 by phone.

Thank you for your attention,

Gary Brennan


Ancestral Search 3


I am a Bowyer from Canada, and am researching my roots to your beautiful area, does anyone you know have any suggestions for me?   Sad to hear about the Inn, it looks great!

Chris Bowyer


Ancestral Search 2


Researching my family history I have an ancestor called William Michael Laurence, who, according to his death certificate lived at The Vicarage, Yarcombe, as a retired fruit farmer.   His wife was called Louisa.   He died 29 March 1954.   Please could you tell me whether there are any local memories of him or his wife?
Thankyou for your time and patience.
Kind Regards,

Paul Brookes


Ancestral Search 1


March 2017

I wonder if you can help me?   I am the Great Granddaughter of Mary Hurford who married James Willie in 1873 and who lived in Yarcombe at Holly Cottage.   Many times as a little girl my Grandmother told me stories of her Mother who was a wonderful lady, she was not only a herbalist but midwife to the local people who would walk miles across the fields to ask for her help and advice.   She was also a wonderful seamstress and gardener growing all her own  herbs for her medicines.   She also kept a pig and chickens so she was virtually self-sufficient apart from general supplies which once a month she would walk across the fields 8 miles there and back to Honiton to buy.

I grew up in Yeovil and my Grandmother and Grandad also moved there from Chard after they were married, so as a little girl I loved to hear all their stories.

A few years ago I tried to find my Holly Cottage but was not successful, I am enclosing some old photos for you to see, they are of my Great-grandmother, my Grandmother and her sister Sarah Ellen, also the cottage and garden, maybe, just maybe you will be able to tell me if the cottage is still standing! I would love to know.   I now live in Teignmouth and am coming up to 76 years old (Mar 2017)!!   It would be lovely to have some history to pass  on to my children, Grandchildren and Great grandchildren!!

I look forward to hopefully hearing from you and thank you in advance. 

Kind regards and best wishes,

Joan Quinlan (Mrs)






It is believed the property referred to as Holly Cottage was more likely to have been Manning Common Cottage at Manning Common, close to Black Allers, a short distance from, and the other side of the A303 from Knighthaynes Farm and Cottage.   Unfortunately the building was demolished, it is believed, in the 1930s, although this has yet to be verified.   During investigations it was found that a great uncle of Joan's, Jack Willie, who was believed lost at sea during WWI actually died of pneumonia whilst still on active service in 1919 in Malta and a photograph of his grave there was obtained.   Memorials, including one to J H Willie, can be seen in the Baptist Chapel here in Yarcombe (see the World War I page).