Pictures of South Molton
About South Molton
The South Molton of present times is known to have been the home of Henry Williamson, author of Tarka the Otter who lived just outside the town, at Shallowford House. He also wrote the engaging story Dandelion Days.
Early evidence suggests that there was once a Saxon colony here but it is as an ancient sheep and cattle market town that South Molton has been documented since the 12th-century. Until the middle of the 19th-century the town prospered as a triving centre for the wool industry. In early times, it was a coach stop on the route to Barnstable and Bideford and it was fortunate to be close to the iron and copper mines of North Molton, a matter which greatly enhanced the fortunes of the town and towns-folk.
There are some very handsome Georgian houses to be seen in this lovely little town along with the elegant 18th-century Guildhall and Assembly Rooms of the 19th-century. The Medical Hall has a unique verandah of intricate ironwork, it overlooks the market place and dates 19th-century. As with many other similar towns, money from the wool trade sourced these beautiful buildings.
South Molton museum tells of the history of the town and has some interesting exhibits including an early wooden fire engine. It is a fascinating place and worthy of your time.
Hugh Squier, was a local farmer's son who, born in 1625 eventually found his way to London and became a wealthy merchant. However, he did not forget the town of his birth, he built and endowed the town's grammer school in 1684, he died in the year 1710 and is commorated by a plaque in the Guildhall.
Close to the square is an avenue of lime trees, leading to the church of St. Mary Magdalene. It was built in 1430 and amongst it's treasures is the original stone pulpit with carvings of apostles.
South Molton is a spacious town amid fine open countryside interspersed with rivers, streams, meadows and pastureland grazed by cattle and sheep. There are pretty cottages and handsome farmhouses dotted around the ancient lanes and here and there you will find a pleasant country inn. It is a charming place and it's close proximity to the beauties of Exmoor make it well worth a visit
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