Welcome to Stoke Gabriel
The village of Stoke Gabriel, South Devon, is situated on a creek of the River Dart and is a quintessential English Village. Steeped in history and surrounded by beautiful countryside, this rural parish nestles into the green rolling hills of the South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
The Quay is the perfect place for children to go crabbing, and there are beautiful walks along the riverbank or through the old apple orchard and winding streets of the village.
This beautiful village retains its historic roots from the 800 year old yew tree in the churchyard (see below) to its gentle tangle of cottages leading down to the river where locals have fished for Dart Salmon for centuries.
The village is popular with boating enthusiasts because of the ready access to the Dart, perfect for trying your hand at kayaking or paddleboarding. There are pubs, local shops, a post office and accommodation all within walking distance.
The Parish Church of St Mary and St Gabriel
The church is a beautiful, medieval parish church, which sits upon a steep bluff next to the Mill Pool. It is reached by Church Walk, a picturesque cobbled path that connects with Paignton Road. The church is normally open for visitors during daylight hours. A warm welcome awaits visitors who wish to join us at one of our regular services of worship.
There was already a church at Stoke Gabriel at the time of the Norman Conquest and its existence is mentioned in the Domesday Book. The church was originally dedicated to St Gabriel in about 1276 but was rededicated jointly to St Mary and St Gabriel in 1846 shortly before it underwent major restoration and refurbishment.
The tower is older than the rest of the church and dates from the 13th Century. The original nave, the main body of the church, fell into disrepair and was rebuilt in the 15th Century. At the same time, the font, pulpit and rood screen were added. The appearance of the interior owes much to the Victorians, who in 1856/57 gave the church a new roof, windows and a new floor, which was elevated in the chancel and in particular the sanctuary. They also installed new pews and an organ, added a vestry and south porch, and rebuilt the lychgate.
The church contains many memorial tablets, windows and gifts indicative of the social history of the area and the generosity of the parishioners.
The churchyard surrounds the church and has fine views over the mill pool and the River Dart with plenty of south-facing benches for people to rest, contemplate or simply enjoy the views. There are many fine headstones commemorating members of local families, including the Pomeroy and Churchward families. The churchyard also contains a yew tree about 800 or more years old. A traditional rhyme claims to provide a way in which wishes can be fulfilled.
“Walk ye backward round about me seven times round for all to see;
Stumble not and then for certain one true wish will come to thee.”
To find out more, visit the church website: Stoke Gabriel Church
There are so many things to do in Stoke Gabriel – enjoy the open countryside by foot, bicycle, buggy (for those smaller visitors), sail or motor. The river is a wonderful opportunity for recreation, and there are many open spaces to enjoy – particularly the Mill Pool, the parish orchard and the prize winning Hoyle Copse. Or if you’d rather, just relax and enjoy friendly atmosphere of the pubs, riverside bistro and tea room.
Further afield are the unspoilt areas of the South Hams with its winding lanes leading to secluded beaches and coves to discover, or to the wild bleakness of Dartmoor to roam. The historic towns of Totnes and Dartmouth are nearby and a boat trip on the River Dart is a “must”.
Other nearby attractions are Paignton Zoo, steam railways and for those interested in our history there are National Trust castles and gardens to explore. The English Riviera towns of Torquay, Paignton and Brixham are but a few miles away.
Whatever you choose, there is something for everyone in Stoke Gabriel. No wonder people say it is “the best kept secret in Devon !”
Bed and Breakfast
Stoke Gabriel Lodgings, 2 Orchard Close Paignton Road, Stoke Gabriel, TQ9 6SX
Contact: 01803 782003
Higher Well Farm Holiday Park, Stoke Gabriel, TQ9 6RN
Contact: 01803 782289
Broadley Farm Park, Broadleigh Farm Park, Coombe House Lane, Aish, TQ9 6PU
Contact: 01803 782554
Ramslade, Stoke Road, Stoke Gabriel, Devon, TQ9 6QB
Contact: 01803 782575
Whitehill Country Park, Stoke Road, Stoke Gabriel, Devon, TQ9 6QB
Contact: 01803 782338 www.whitehill-park.co.uk
Stoke Gabriel Stores, Paignton Road, Stoke Gabriel, TQ9 6SE – General Store
Opening Times – Every day until 6.30pm, (1.30pm Sunday)
Contact: 01803 782691
River Dart Gallery, Darton Grove, Stoke Gabriel TQ9 6RX – Fine Art & Gifts
Opening Times – Wednesday – Saturday 10am – 5pm, (Sundays 10am – 2pm)
Contact: 01803 783543 www.gbfineartphoto.co.uk
Stoke Gabriel Garage, Paignton Road, Stoke Gabriel
Contact: 01803 782691