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Hemyock Castle
Ancient Heart of the Blackdowns

Heritage Open Days 2016 in Hemyock, Devon

On Sunday 11th September 2016, from 2 to 5 pm, Hemyock Castle and Village again took part in this hugely popular celebration of culture and heritage.

Picture of Hemyock Castle Gatehouse

Hemyock is set in the now tranquil Culm Valley within the beautiful Blackdown Hills in Devon, just a few miles from the M5 Motorway and Taunton. Hemyock Castle is a scheduled Ancient Monument.

Although situated in the heart of Hemyock village, the castle site is screened by trees and walls so surprisingly little can be seen from the road.

Special events on Sunday 11th September 2016 from 2 to 5 pm included:

Hemyock Castle

Across the stream bordering the Western Churchyard wall is Hemyock Castle. Visitors can follow the trail around the moated Medieval castle ruins and view displays illustrating 700 years of the site's history.

In 1380, King Richard II granted a licence to crenellate the fortified manor house; effectively giving "planning permission" for the castle. During the English Civil War the castle was garrisoned for Parliament against King Charles I. Royalist captives were imprisoned until either they changed sides or were ransomed by their friends. Therefore, when King Charles II was restored to the throne he ordered the castle be "slighted" – its walls and towers were breached so that it could never again be held against the King. Later, the old manor house became a farm house, the old castle buildings were adapted, and the ruins were "quarried" for stone. For the next 300 years until the early 1970s, Hemyock Castle was Castle Farm.

We look forward to seeing you during the Sunday afternoon.


Heritage Open Days are part of European Heritage Days – a Council of Europe Initiative. They are co-ordinated by The National Trust. Hemyock Castle receives no funding, and makes no charge for entry on Heritage Open Days. Donations are welcomed to The Blackdown Support Group.

This year, Heritage Open Days activities will take place throughout Britain between the 8th and 11th September. Around 750,000 visitors will take part in the weekend – making the most of the opportunity to visit an intriguing selection of homes, offices, castles, churches, prisons, windmills, architectural Oddities, contemporary design classics and historical gems – all free of charge.

Around 25,000 volunteers across the UK will work behind the scenes to stage "the best day out in history." This is our annual chance to gain access to parts of our local communities that are normally restricted, learn a little more about where we live and – most important of all – have a great free day out.

For full details of all Heritage Open Days activities around Britain and Europe, call in at the local Tourist Information Centre or visit the website for European Heritage Days.

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Hemyock Castle, Hemyock, CULLOMPTON, Devon, EX15 3RJ, UK.
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