WOODLEIGH, which gives name to a deanery, is a small village, in a healthy and elevated situation, on the east side of the Aven valley, 3½ miles N. of Kingsbridge. Its parish contains 269 souls, and 2319 acres of land, including the hamlets of Priston and Hendham. The manor belonged at an early period to the Damarells, but it now belongs – 3/8ths to J. B. Swete, Esq., 1/8th to the heirs of F. Wise, Esq., ¼ to the heirs of Mrs. S. Edmonds, and ¼ to the heirs of Mrs. E. Netherton. the chief owners of the soil are J. B. Swete, J. Netherton, J. Luscombe, and W. B. Fortescue, Esqrs. Wood Barton, formerly a seat of the Fortescues, was a large quadrangular mansion, of the 15th century, but only two of its sides now remain. The Church (St. Mary,) is a small antique fabric, with a tower and three bells. It has lately been renovated, and a new east window inserted. The interior has several handsome mural tablets, belonging to the Luscombe, Cornish, Edmonds, and other families. The silver flagons given by Lady Amy Fortescue in 1686, weighs 4lbs. 12oz., and is emblazoned with the Fortescue and Courtenay arms. The rectory, valued in K.B. at £22. 8s. 4d., and in £420 in 1831, is in the patronage of Exeter College, Oxford, and incumbency of the Rev. George Dawson, M.A., who has 85A. 2R. 6P. of glebe, and a large and handsome residence. The poor have a yearly rent-charge of 35s. out of Lowerdale estate.
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