MDE20959 - School House and Chapel Hill, Barbrook Mill (Building)


A Methodist chapel and schoolroom, with attached manse. The school opened in 1870, with a playground added in the 1930s. It closed in 1967.

Please read the Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record .

Type and Period (3)

Protected Status

Full Description

Youth Centre, Barbrook. Formerly methodist chapel. Early or mid 19th Century. 3 pointed upper windows with small leaded diamond panes.3 square-headed ground floor windows and 2 entrances with fanlights. 4 flat stepped buttresses. Steep slate roof. [1] The 1st and 2nd Edition Ordnance Survey maps show the buildings (less the hall to the northeast) labelled as 'Methodist Chapel (Wesleyan). [2,3] The Methodist Chapel is also shown on the Ordnance Survey 6 inch (1903) map. [4] The church and school is still present on modern MasterMap data. [5] The buildings were visited in April 2012 as part of the rapid condition survey of Exmoor's Listed Buildings 2012-13. The Chapel received a BAR score of 4 and the Youth Centre a score of 6. [6] Barbrook Mill school was built and run by Methodists, opening in 1872 and closing in 1967. In the early 1900s there were about 70 children at the school, with two teachers; Mr Hardman the headmaster and his assistant teacher. There was only one room at the school then and all the teaching was done in there to all the different age groups. An additional classroom had been built on the side by 1931 and the infants were in there with one teacher, with the older ones in the second classroom. Miss Kipling, one of the teachers at that time, lived in one of the cottages at Cherry Bridge. It was a Methodist School and children would take part in Harvest Festivals and Methodist anniversaries and so on as the chapel was part of the school, but otherwise it was just a normal school. There was no sports or games as the school didn't have a playground, with children having to try and play on the steep hillside next to the school. However, a piece of land was given to the school by Captain Slater and a playground was built, allowing tennis and other organised games. [7] Barbrook Mill is a Wesleyan school established in 1870. It survived beyond 1903. Its date of accession to the Grant List was 1872. It closed in 1967. [8] The school playground can still be viewed on aerial photographs taken in 1977. [9] Barbrook school register provides various reasons why children from moorlands could not attend school, including helping with lambing, shearing, digging and planting potatoes as well as bad weather or illness (two children were sent home to Hoar Oak Cottage in 1905 with tuberculosis). [10]

Sources/Archives (10)

  • <1> Index: Department of the Environment. List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest . HHR: Lynton (3 Sept 1973) 3.
  • <2> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1868-1901. County Series; 1st Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500.
  • <3> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1902-1907. County Series, 2nd Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500.
  • <4> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1903/38. 6 Inch: 1903-38. 1:10560. Sheets 3NW and SW.
  • <5>XY Map: Ordnance Survey. 2017. MasterMap. [Mapped feature: #40267 Church and School buildings, ]
  • <6> Report: Lawrence, G.. 2014. Exmoor National Park: Rapid condition survey of listed buildings 2012-13.
  • <7> Monograph: Ramsay, D.. 2009. Unforgotten Exmoor: Volume 1. Rare Books and Berry. 1. 23, 25, 26, 31-35.
  • <8> Monograph: Sellman, R.R.. 1967. Devon Village Schools in the Nineteenth Century. David and Charles Limited. 37, 53, 160, 161.
  • <9>XY Aerial photograph: Meridian Air Maps. 1977-1978. Infrared False Colour Aerial Photography. [Mapped feature: #43998 School playground, ]
  • <10> Website: The Friends of Hoar Oak Cottage. 2018. Hoar Oak Cottage., accessed 5 February 2018.

External Links (0)

Other Statuses/References

  • 2012-3 Building At Risk Score (4): 858/1/2/51/1
  • 2012-3 Building At Risk Score (6): 858/1/2/51/2
  • Devon SMR Monument ID: 24038
  • Devon SMR: SS74NW/98
  • Local List Status (No)



Grid reference Centred SS 7166 4769 (58m by 56m) (2 map features)
Map sheet SS74NW

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Related Events/Activities (1)

Related Articles (1)

Record last edited

Jun 3 2021 10:52AM


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