It is widely believed by the locals that Landkey was found by Sir Francis Drake in 1586 as a settlement to escape from the Spanish Armada. This 'mistruth legend' has, however, been disputed by historians. It is more widely accepted that the name of the village, Landkey, is derived from the Llan of Kea, 'Llan' is the south-western Brythonic (and Welsh) for an area of ground around a church or chapel, which in this case was Saint Kea's hermitage. Kea and a brother Celtic monk, Filia, are known to have worked together in the evangelisation of these parts, probably in the late 5th century. The coming of the Saxons often caused the changing of Celtic church dedications to those of more universally accepted and known saints. However, place names are more difficult to change. Thus Saint Kea's name persists in the village name of 'Landkey' and some 6 miles away Filia's name is contained in the village of 'Filleigh'. Today, the dedication of both parish churches is to St. Paul.
LANDKEYS POWER LIFTING CHAMPION
GOOGLE STREET VIEW ENTERING LANDKEY
The “Ring O’ Bells” public house is to be found in Landkey town in a picturesque setting, with St Paul’s church in the background. It is approached across an ancient cobbled causeway and adjoins the Feoffees cottages where, in the olden days, travellers waited for the Barnstaple to Taunton coach.
The Landkey Feoffees was a trust formed in 1631 when a local benefactor gave some land and houses to the villagers of Landkey to help support the poor. In 1792 the Feoffees were responsible for turning one of their properties into a local pub when they decided to spend a large sum on refurbishing the building. The pub was names the “Ring O’ Bells”, probably because of its proximity to the church. The Feoffees made a wise investment in the pub for it soon generated a steady income which allowed them to spend money on other projects. In the North Devon Record Office are two documents recording agreements between the Feoffees of Landkey and the tenants of the Ring O Bells Inn.
In September 1832 a Richard Galliford leased the property for seven years for a yearly rent of £17, payable quarterly on Christmas Day, Lady Day, Midsummer Day and Michaelmas. By December 1839 a Mr Samuel Fairchild took over the lease for an annual rent of £21. Inflation is nothing new!
The interior of the pub has changed a great deal over the years. When the floor of the original bar was being laid the local farmers and butchers saved any blood they had from slaughtered animals and took it to the pub to be mixed with cement to give the floor a reddish colour.
Landkey Mazzards: The parish of Landkey in north Devon has been reviving a part of its heritage. The mazzard, a type of cherry peculiar to the west country, and probably introduced by the Huguenots during the c18, was once the focus of a thriving market industry.
The mazzard was in danger of becoming extinct, but Landkey residents are keen to resurrect this part of local life
.Until world war two, Mazzard Greens, as the orchards are known, covered 100 acres around Landkey with varieties such as Dun, Bottlers and Green Stem Black. The trees often reached 50 feet. The fruits are smaller than most cherries, but they are sweet and delicious, and the trees are resistant to bacterial canker.
Michael Gee of Orchards Live has been helping the villagers of Landkey to create new mazzard greens. A Millennium Green has been created, part of which is a Mazzard Green comprising five varieties of Mazzards and 3 local apple varieties - Listener, Limberland and Stockbearer - 65 trees in total. Contact Dick Joy, +44(01)271 830325 for details.
Literary Landkey has the 'text factor'
06 March 2009
WINNERS Landkey School, Rachael Bellew, Isobel Hampton and Deborah Roper with scorer Francis Huntingford of West Croft School, Bideford.
PUPILS from Landkey Primary School proved they had the "text factor" when the school won the World Book Day children's quiz at Barnstaple Library for the second year running yesterday (Thursday 5th March 2009).
Teams of young book fans from 12 North Devon primary schools pitted their literary wits in the competition, being questioned about books and their authors.
Each of the three-strong teams comprised children aged eight, nine and 10.
After a series of heats, Landkey and Swimbridge schools contested the final, with Landkey retaining their title 19-14.
Team members Rachael Bellew and Isobel Hampton, who were also in the winning team last year, were this time joined by Deborah Roper.
The Swimbridge team comprised Florence Gillard, Lucie Slape and Jacob Heard.