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Updated:  30 December 2011 

This Saint Budeaux was at the time of the first written record, the Domesday Book of 1086, known as “Bucheside”.    But standard spelling was unknown and over the following centuries it became "Buddekshid" (1282), "Seynt Bodokkys" (1520), "St Budox" (1624) and finally "Saint Budeaux or Saint Buddox" in 1796.  It was part of the Honour of Plympton, of which Judhael of Totnes was the overlord, and the Hundred of Wakhampton which later became the Hundred of Roborough. 

General view of Saint Budeaux, showing the Southern Railway goods yard and the Baptist Chapel.

General view of Saint Budeaux, showing
the Southern railway goods yard and the Baptist Chapel.
From a postcard.

The first place of worship, dedicated to the Celtic saint, Saint Budoc, is said to have been a chapel attached to the main residential property, “Bucheside”.  At that time it was within the Parish of Saint Andrew’s and the minister had to travel from there, or from Plympton Priory, to hold services.  In modern language the house was called "Budshead".

Within the area of Saint Budeaux were several manors:

o    Bucheside (Saint Budeaux);

o    Ernsettle (Ernesettle);

o    Hanenchelola (Honicknowle);

o    Kinterbury;

o    Tanbretona (King’s Tamerton);

o    Witeleia (East Whitleigh and Thorn and also West Whitleigh).  [1]

“Tanbretona” was 510 acres in extent and was held directly by King Edward and thus became “King’s Tanbretona” or King’s Tamerton.  “Hanenchelola” (Honciknowe), and “Witeleia” (East Whitleigh and Thorn), totalling 369 acres, was held from the King by the Count of Mortain.  In addition to holding “Stoches” (Stoke) from the King, Robert de Albemarle also held “Witelie” (West Whitleigh), 279 acres.  Finally, “Bucheside”, which included Budshead, Ernesettle and Kinterbury, comprising 524 acres, was held from the King by Alured the Breton.  [1] 

On May 20th 1482 Saint Budeaux was accorded the status of an ecclesiastical parish in its own right.  The existing Parish Church was completed in 1563.  [2]

When the Tithes of the Parish were commuted in 1843 the Small or Vicarial Tithe amounted to £60 and was paid to the vicar of Saint Budeaux Church while the Great or Rectorial Tithe came to £325 and was paid to Mr J Wills.  [3]

At the time of the census on Sunday March 31st 1851, there were 1,096 people living in the Parish.  That comprised 583 males and 513 females and was the only one of the rural parishes to have more men than women.  There were 197 inhabited houses, 9 uninhabited and one under construction.  The population of the Parish  had increased by 302 since 1841.  [4]

On Saturday December 2nd 1854 over forty of the workmen employed on the construction of the embankment at Ernesettle were treated to a supper at the Saint Bude Inn by Mr W E Elliott of the Royal Hotel in Plymouth and the owner of Agaton and Ernesettle Bartons.  The event was to celebrate the completion of the work, by which upwards of 100 acres of good pasture land had been reclaimed from the bed of the River Tamar.  The embankment was 1,393 yards in length and the materials excavated and deposited in the embankment amounted to 66, 480 cubic yards.  It was 24 feet deep on the seaward side.  The design and specification were drawn up by Mr John Brunton and the work had been carried out by Messrs Hutchinson and Ritson in fifteen months.  The joint superintendents of the project, Mr Garnier and Mr Holmes, acted as chairman and vice-chairman at the supper, which was supplemented with a plentiful supply of beer and tobacco.  The health of the donor and his family were drunk 'with three times three and one cheer more' and a toast was proposed 'To the success of the Ernesettle embankment'.  No doubt there were many other toasts drunk during the evening.  [4a]

Saint Budeaux was created a civil parish in 1894.  The election of parish councillors was to take place on or near to April 15th each year.   [5]

The part of the area which came within the parish of Saint Stephen's in the County of Cornwall (the area of Saltash Passage) was transferred to the civil parish of Saint Budeaux under the Local Government Order 32,169 dated April 1st 1895.  [6]

On August 12th 1898 the Royal Assent was given to the Local Government Board’s Provisional Order Confirmation (No. 10) Act 1898, which confirmed the Devonport (Extension) Order 1898.  This authorised the transfer on to the Borough of Devonport a part of the parish of Saint Budeaux and a small portion of the parish of Weston Peverell or Pennycross.  The transfer came into operation on November 9th 1898.  As a result the size of Devonport Borough Council was increased from 36 to 45 Councillors and from 12 to 15 electoral Wards, Ford Ward being added to the new area and divided into Ford, Pennycross, Station and Tamerton Wards.  [7]

But Devonport’s entitlement to receive the rates from the inhabitants of Saint Budeaux was made conditional upon them:

o    reconstructing Camel’s Head Bridge;

o    extending the tramway as far as Saint Budeaux Railway Station;

o    and constructing a landing stage at Saltash Passage ‘of sufficient size to enable passenger steamers of the size now plying between Plymouth and Saltash to land and embark passengers there’.  [7]

And that wasn’t all.  The Order also required the Corporation to establish a new cemetery; open a reading room; provide fire appliances; establish a Police presence; lay down proper and sufficient mains for the supply of gas; improve the existing footpaths and construct new ones long the main roads; and provide a footbridge in connection with the Great Western Railway’s viaduct over Weston Mill Creek.  The Order also empowered them to take over the sewerage and drainage facilities in Saint Budeaux from Plympton Rural District Council.  [7]

Thus, Saint Budeaux, King’s Tamerton and the military establishments at Bull Point were moved within the Borough of Devonport, as did Camel’s Head out of Pennycross Parish, while Honicknowle remained in the Parish of Saint Budeaux. [7]

The transfer was confirmed by Local Government Board Order P1462 dated November 9th 1898.  [6]

The Saint Budeaux School Board was elected in early 1901.   The chairman was Mr H Doney and Mr J Hubble was the vice-chairman.  The only general members were a Doctor Olver and Mr Toms.  The clerk to the Board was Mr A J Northcott.  [8]

A bit of point scoring took place in January 1901, following the death of HM Queen Victoria.  At the first annual meeting of the Saint Budeaux Ratepayers' Association on Thursday January 31st 1901, Mr Endean complained that the authorities did not cross Camel's Head Bridge to read the Proclamation of the new King.  They had, in effect, ignored the new boundary of the Town and gone only as far as the old boundary.  The rather poor response from Alderman Stanbury was that the point was selected 'because it was a boundary of the borough when the late Queen's reign commenced'.  [9]

The report presented to members of the Ratepayers’ Association in 1901 gives details of some of the developments, or lack of them, since Devonport Corporation took over.  They had got a lamp.  Presumably it was an oil one as it was claimed the only hope of ever getting gas at Saint Budeaux was if the Corporation bought out the private gas company.  The tramway had still not reached Saint Budeaux Station and this fact alone rendered the Corporation liable to forfeiture of the rates of four shillings in the pound that Saint Budeaux’s residents were paying.  The Borough Engineer had pointed out that an embankment across Camel’s Head Creek would be less costly than a steel bridge.  [9]

Some fire hydrants existed in Saint Budeaux but from the claim that the screw fittings were of different threads it must be assumed that they were already in existence before Devonport too over responsibility.  However, the Corporation had now made a telephone link with the fire brigade’s headquarters in Ker Street.  [9]

There was further dissatisfaction that the Devonport School Board had failed to make adequate provision for the education of the children displaced by the closure of the Admiralty’s School at Bull Point.    The senior girls were still without school accommodation.  [9]

Mr Water Garstang chaired the Ratepayers' Association's first annual meeting, supported by the honorary secretary, Mr E F Kitt and the committee, Messrs Bonney (honorary treasurer), Cousins, Endean, Searle, Short, Stanbury, and Steel.  [9]

At a meeting of the Saint Budeaux School Board on Thursday July 19th 1901 it was reported that the Board of Education had approved the chosen site for a school mid way between Crownhill and Honicknowle and it was resolved that Mr Kitsell should be appointed architect and asked to prepare plans.  The Board erected only one school, the Saint Budeaux and Crownhill Board School.  [8]

In 1934 the southern boundary of Saint Budeaux was such that it started on the southern side of the Royal Albert Bridge and ran to the eastern end of the actual Bridge before following the southern edge of the cutting in which the Royal Albert Bridge Signal Box was situated.  The Signal Box was thus in the parish and not in the City of Plymouth.  [10]

At the bridge over the railway line, it turned north to follow the north-west edge of the bridge and Vicarage Road to just opposite Barne Tower.  From here it followed the field boundary around the top of Tamar Terrace.   It then swung north and east around Ernesettle House, which was thus outside the parish and in Devonport, and around the south and eastern rim of Bickham Hill before joining Agaton Road.  [10]

The boundary then crossed Ernesettle Road and ran along the field hedge to the north of Saint Budeaux Parish Church, which was thus no longer inside its own parish but within Devonport.   Leaving the Blue Monkey Inn within Devonport, it traversed the northern edge of what was then still a lane opposite Marrett and Dunstone Roads.  From there until the junction with Coombe Park Lane the boundary was indistinct because of road widening.   This stretch was known as Crownhill Road although the majority of the highway was still called Saltash Road.  [10]

It picked up the old road again opposite the end of Coombe Park Lane and ran along the northern side as far as Little Dock Lane, where it abruptly turned south, leaving the School and the village of Honicknowle still in the parish.  The boundary followed the Lane southwards until it crossed the stream which flowed down from Crownhill, whereupon it followed the stream  north-eastwards right into Crownhill.  [10]

Under the Devon Review Order of 1935, the Parish of Saint Budeaux took over the major part of the Civil Parish of Weston Peverell/Pennycross.  [11]

Places within the Parish of Saint Budeaux

The following houses, farms and public houses/inns were within the Parish of Saint Budeuax: Agaton Farm; Albert Bridge Inn; Alma Cottage; Barn Barton; Boger's Tenement; Brookland Farm; Budshead or Buttshead Barton; Budshead or Buttshead Mills; Castle Farm; Castle Farm Inn (see also Eggbuckland); Coombe Farm; Devonport Inn; Ernesettle Barton/Farm; Ferry Inn; First & Last Public House; Goold's Cottage; Hope House; Kinterbury Farm; Little Ash Farm; Lower Ernesettle Farm; Moor Farm; Mount Tamar House; New Inn (see also Eggbuckland); Newland Cottage; Powder Magazine, Bull Point; Rectory; Saint Budeaux Inn; Saltash Passage; Saltmoor Farm; Traveller's Rest; West Park House; West Whitleigh House; Weston Mill Farm; Whitleigh Farm; Whitleigh Hall; Woodland Farm. 

Lords of the Manor

The Lord of the Manor of Saint Budeaux in 1851 was Lord Thomas W Graves, of Gravesend, Antony, near Torpoint, Cornwall.  [12]

It would appear that the title had ceased by 1870.  [13]

Overseer of the Poor

The Overseer of the Poor for Saint Budeaux in 1857 is not known.  [14]

Parish Clerk

The Parish Clerk for Saint Budeaux in 1851 was Mr Thomas Penney, carpenter, who resided at the Traveller's Rest, King's Tamerton.  [15]

By 1870 he had been superseded by  Mr Thomas Sobey, mason.  [14]

Parish Constable

The Parish Constable for Saint Budeaux in 1851 was Mr James Bonney, of Mount Whitleigh.  He was also Collector of the Parish Rate.  [16]

Surveyor of Highways

The Surveyor of Highways for Saint Budeaux in 1857 was Mr William Bennett, of Knackersknowle.  [14]

Post Office

1857 - At King’s Tamerton, Mrs Ann Bonney, sub-postmistress.  Post arrived 7.15am and was despatched at 5pm.  [14]

1870 – Location not stated, Mr James Moulds, sub-postmaster.  Post arrived from Plymouth at 8.30am and despatched to Plymouth at 5.10pm.  [13]

Carriers (to Devonport and Plymouth)

Mr Thomas Granville, shopkeeper, King’s Tamerton, and Mr Francis Truscott, dairyman, Saint Budeaux, both on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.  [14]


[1]  Reichel, Oswad J, “The Hundred of Roborough (Walchentona) in Early Times”, in the series “The Hundreds of Devon”, Devonshire Association, Exeter, 1930.

[2]  See ChurchesAncient ParishSaint Budeaux.

[3]  White, William, "White's Devon, 1850", reprinted by David & Charles (Publishers) Ltd, Newton Abbot, Devon, 1968, ISBN 7153-4276-2.

[4]  “Census, 1851”, Plymouth, Devonport & Stonehouse Herald, Plymouth, May 17th 1851.

[4a]  "St Budeaux", Plymouth, Devonport & Stonehouse Herald, Plymouth, December 9th 1854.

[5]  Under the Local Government Act 1894.

[6]  St Budeaux, "Kelly' Directory of Devonshire, 1939", Kelly's Directories Ltd, London, 1939.

[7]  The Local Government Board’s Provisional Order Confirmation (No. 10) Act 1898.

[8]  See Schools - Board Schools - St Budeaux School Board.

[9]  “St Budeaux Ratepayers’ Association: First Annual Meeting”, Western Daily Mercury, Plymouth, February 1st 1901.

[10]  Ordnance Survey maps.

[11]  Devon Review Order 1935, held at the Devon Record Office, Exeter, accession number 294/A3/91, courtesy of Mr Tom Jewel, Exeter.

[12]  White, William, “Plymouth 1890: History and Directory”, Hindsight Publications, King’s Lynn, Norfolk, 1989.  Also 1851 census.

[13]  “Morris & Company’s Commercial Directory and Gazetteer, 1870,” as transcribed by Mr Peter Rutherford, through

[14]  Billing, M, “M Billing’s Directory of Plymouth, Stonehouse & Devonport”, M Billing, 1857.

[15]  1851 Census, HO107/1877/605/3.

[16]  1851 Census,HO107/1877/635/29.


©  Brian Moseley, Plymouth, UK

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