| ||A small town of Georgian origins just inland from the coast. Nearby, is the interesting 15th Century Parish Church of St Nectan at Stoke, which boasts a 128-ft. high tower used as a landmark by ships before the lighthouse was built at Hartland Point. |
The Lighthouse has a beam that is visible from about 20 miles out to sea. There are excellent views up and down the rugged north coast from Hartland Point.
Hartland Quay has great rocks rearing out of the sea; on a stormy day, sample the ferocious majesty of the wild and unpredictable Atlantic
Ocean. On fine days, Lundy Island can be seen some 10 miles distant
Hartland Quay Museum contains information on shipwrecks, of which there have been many in the vicinity, and local places of historic interest.
Originally a Georgian Market Town. The Old Town Hall clock, made in Barnstaple in 1622, is now situated in The Chapel of St John.
Not only does the church have a very high steeple, but an interior well worth a visit to view the spacious and interesting architecture and features. The main part of the church dates from the 14th Century, the tower from the 16th Century, with later restorations in the 19th Century. It is said that, in the 6th Century, when St. Nectan arrived from Wales on this wild coast, he resided at Stoke, so giving his name to this magnificent church. Legend has it that when St Nectan was beheaded, he carried his head under his arm and wherever blood dropped, a foxglove grew. On St Nectan's Day foxgloves are still carried to the church by children of the parish.
Founded by King Harold's mother, Gytha, in 1060 as a college for secular canons, later in the 12th Century it became a priory for Augustinian monks. The original buildings and later additions were replaced in 1779 by the Gothic house that you see today. There is a substantial amount of material from the original buildings incorporated in the Abbey.