Page updated 21st July 2011
In the 12th Century, a hospital for 13 lepers was built at a safe distance outside the South Gate, in what is now, Bull Meadow. The hospital was dedicated to St Mary Magdalene and hence, the road became known as Magdalen Street. In 1435 William Wynard continued the tradition by opening a hospice for 12 infirm paupers and priests in Magdalen Street. Magdalen Road crossed a deep valley that was filled in, during 1599, to ease the passage of hard working horses. Tozer's 1792 map of Exeter shows both Maudlin and Magdalen as names. The shops along Magdalen Street, between the West of England Eye Hospital, now the Barcelona Hotel, and the bottom of South Street were compulsorily purchased in 1962 by the Council. In October 1974, the tenants were given seven days notice to quit to allow the construction of the gyratory road system that surrounds the modern Judge Jefferies pub and car park. The Acorn Inn and shops including the 60 year old cycle shop, Warnes closed and the buildings demolished. The Valiant Soldier on the corner of Magdalen Street and Holloway Street had already been demolished. Since the opening of the inner bypass between Magdalene Street and Paris Street, Magdalen Road has had a series of traffic calming measures added to both reduce and slow traffic. The shopping area supports a range of interesting, independent shops - who needs a supermarket when you live here.
The Magdalen Drop (Maudlin) was the main execution place for Exeter. It was situated to the east of the corner of College Avenue, in St Lukes College carpark. The condemned were transported by cart from South Gate Prison. The last execution at the Magdalen Drop was in 1818.
Robert Cole, Coldstream Guards. 6 February 1915. Age 28. Woodbine
Place, Magdalen Road
Captain, John Edmund William Dennis, Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry. 23 August 1914. Magdalen Road
2nd Corporal, Samuel Wilkey Goldsworthy, Royal Engineers. 5 January 1915. Age 44. Magdalen Bridge, Magdalen Rd
Acting Bombardier, Michael Lacey, Royal Field Artillery. 29 March 1917. Age 31. Woodbine Place, Magdalen Rd
Captain, James Stirling, Cameronians (Scottish Rifles). 2 January 1915. Age 30. Hensleigh House, Magdalen Rd
Rifleman, Gowden Wilkeyson, King's Royal Rifle Corps. 17 August 1916. Age 27. Magdalen Rd
Gunner, Patrick Wilson, Royal Field Artillery. 27 February 1919. Age 60. Pavilion Place, Magdalen Rd
Percival Harold Syms, Machine Gun Corps (Infantry). 14 April 1918. Age
19. Magdalen St
Sapper, A J Cobley, Royal Engineers. 14 December 1918. Age 22, Wynards, Magdalent St
Ordinary Seaman, Sidney Charles Collins, H.M.S. "P.41.", Royal Navy. 10 May 1918. Age 19. Magdalen St
Lance Corporal, William Neville Jubb, Royal 1st Devon Yeomanry. 25 November 1915. Age 23. Magdalen St
Private, Richardson Grey Warne, Durham Light Infantry. 7 December 1918. Age 36. Magdalen St
Private, Charles Weeks, Essex Regiment. 9 August 1917. Age 23. Magdalen St
Magdalen Road shops in Edwardan times. Magdalen Street ahead, with Southernhay on the left. The Acorn Inn is about halfway up the street on the right - circa 1960. Photo courtesy of Dick Passmore.Magdalen Street looking back towards South Street and Quay Hill straight ahead. Photo courtesy of Dick Passmore.
│ Top of Page │