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St Anne's Chapel & Almshouses - Blackboy Road

Page updated 26 May 2009

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Originally on the site of a medieval hermitage, a chapel dedicated to St Anne the patron saint of weavers, was built in 1418. Situated in the centre of the fork of Old Tiverton Road and the original Bath Road, now Blackboy Road, it is a tiny corner of old Exeter.

After Henry VIII dissolved the monasteries, the Mainwaring family became the owners and endowed the almshouses for eight poor folk between 1561 and 1617. During the Civil War in 1646, the buildings were used as a fortified post by the forces of Fairfax and were badly damaged.

Restored in 1838 and then again in 1907 by W D Caroe, who was responsible for St Davids Church. The chapel has a tiny timber-ribbed barrel vault roof. It is now used by the Greek Orthodox Church as a centre of worship in Exeter.

Because of its position, the Chapel was the site for a fire alarm and fire hose, installed by Captain Pett of the City Fire Brigade. It was also a place where people would assemble for processions along Sidwell Street, including the so called "Young Exeter' who would come out to celebrate Guy Fawkes and cause trouble in the town.

Sources: Various including the Flying Post

St Anne's Chapel & Almshouse, Blackboy RoadSt Anne's Chapel and almshouses The courtyard formed by the chapel and almshouses.

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