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At this crisis the Government called on the different counties to take steps for the defence of the kingdom.

The Lord Lieutenant (Earl Fortescue) convened a meeting of the magistrates of Devon at Exeter for 22nd Apriì, 1794.

The meeting was presided over by the High Sheriff, John Sarrell Pode, Esq., and the following suggestions were discussed and adopted :

1. To augment the militia by volunteer companies, as was practised in the last war; and by volunteers being added to existing companies.

2. To form volunteer companies in particular towns, especially those near the coast.

3. To raise volunteer troops of Fencible Cavalry—officers to have temporary rank only; arms, accoutrements, and clothing to be supplied by Government. Levy-money to be furnished by persons raising troops, and horses to be paid for at a reasonable price by the Government. Persons raising two troops to have temporary rank of major, or six troops of lieutenant-colonel.

4. Infantry companies to consist of 71 men, viz., 1 captain, 2 lieutenants, 3 sergeants, 3 corporals, 2 drummers, 60 privates; twenty men in each company to have firelocks, the remainder to be armed with pikes 8 feet long. Unless called out, not to be removed more than five miles from home. In time of invasion to act in the county only.

Resolved,—“That we are ready at all times to stand forward in a Constitutional manner for the defence of the country. That this is a time of crisis. That a county committee be formed, and that all subscribers of £20 be members.

“That sub-committees be formed in different districts, to consist of subscribers of £5."

2nd May, 1794.—Sir Stafford H. Northcott, Sheriff, in the chair.

It was reported that subscriptions amounted in the county to £8,300 8s.; in City of Exeter to £1,239 12s.

16th May.— It was stated that the South Coast was most liable to immediate attack. Resolved to apply to the Government for an engineer officer to report; also for guns, carriages, and traces, that country horses might move them about. That volunteer artillery be raised to man the guns. Also advisable to raise volunteer infantry. That the offer of Exmouth to raise a company be accepted. That the offer of Cullompton be not accepted until it be decided whether any but seaport towns shall raise volunteers.

30th May.-Reported that Exmouth, having raised sixty men, nominated James Coldridge, Esq., to be captain ; Nicholas Barnwell, Esq., as lieutenant. That Mr. Alderman Kitson reported a roll of seventy men of the City of Exeter ready to learn military duty on the following terms, viz.—1st, to nominate their own officers; 2nd, to be provided with arms and outfits ; 3rd, be paid if marched twenty miles from Exeter or called out.

These terms appear to have been accepted, as Colonel Mackenzie was appointed captain, Benjamin Honeycombe lieutenant, and Jonathan Burnet ensign. Major Taylor reported eighty men from Teignmouth. Rev. Mr. Jenkins, the same from Sidmouth. Sir Bouchier Wrey reported a company from Barnstaple.

It being resolved that inland towns be permitted to volunteer, subject to the decision of the War Office, Dr. Honeywood reported a company from Honiton, to which Major Winchester was nominated captain, James Townsend lieutenant, and E. Blagdon ensign.

Subscriptions were reported to date :-County, £11,665; City of Exeter, £1,390. It was resolved “that the Right Honourable Lord Clifford be chairman of the Internal Defence Committee, and that he preside at the next meeting on 10th June.”

10th June, 1794.-Lord Clifford in the chair.

The resolutions of former meetings were ratified. Many towns reported ready to raise companies.

Resolved not to encourage any situated more than six miles from the sea, owing to the scarcity of arms.

24th June.-Rolls of volunteers offering their services were presented from Plymouth, Torrington, Bideford, Newton Bushel, Axminster, and Cullompton. Subscriptions reported from county, £12,621; from the City of Exeter, £1,432; total, £14,053.

8th July.-Standards were ordered for troops of yeomanry. A company of infantry was accepted from Kenton.

13th August.- Mr. Cary applied for leave to raise a company of infantry and a battery of artillery at Torquay.

A correspondence with the War Office about accoutrements was read.

It was resolved that the following accoutrements were necessary for each man, viz. :-One pouch and shoulder-belt, one magazine-belt and bayonet-frog, one firelock-sling, one brass breastplate (plain).

3rd September.-A second company was accepted from Exeter.

7th October.—The committee ordered an inspection of the Southern corps by Colonel Mackenzie.

4th November.—Colonel Mackenzie reported on his inspection that the men were able to fire volleys, and saluted well.

7th January, 1795.-Returns showed that two troops of cavalry and twenty-three companies of infantry had been raised and equipped by subscription.

3rd March.—Sir Stafford H. Northcott in the chair.

The Lord Lieutenant, Earl Fortescue, ordered monthly returns from each corps. 7th April.—Lord Clifford in the chair.

Resolved that the twelve companies in the eastern part of the county form a battalion under Colonel Mackenzie.'

June 2nd.—Letter received from Colonel Orchard, of Hartland Abbey, that he had inspected his own regiment, viz., the corps at Fremington, Westleigh, Northam, Hartland, and two companies at Bideford. This appears to be the six Western companies of the North Battalion.

The work of the committee appears to have ended here, although it remained in existence.

5th April, 1796.—Lord Clifford in the chair. Returns showed

22 Companies of Infantry, }1,621 men.

In this year an attempt was made by the French to land in Ireland, which failed, and the expedition returned to Brest with the loss of four ships of the line and eight frigates.

Early in 1797 an expedition under Tate appeared in the Bristol Channel, off Ilfracombe, with the intention of burning Bristol. The North Devon Volunteers turned out with great VOL. XXIV.


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zeal, and were prepared to dispute the landing on their coast. The French, however, turned northward, and landed in Wales, where they soon surrendered to a force of militia, yeomanry, and volunteers, under Lord Cawdor, supported, it was said, by Welsh women in red cloaks. The vessels of the expedition were taken by Admiral Lord Bridport.

25th April, 1797.—The Defence Committee again met, and tendered the thanks of the county to the North Devon Volunteers “for their zeal in assembling with so much alacrity on the appearance of the enemy off Ilfracombe.”

It appears that the Plymouth Volunteers acted independently of the County Committee.

1 For subsequent Defence arrangements vide Transactions of the Devonshire Association, vol. xi. p. 348, and lecture by A. H. A. Hamilton, Esq., on “Devonshire Volunteers Eighty Years Ago.” 1881,

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The former paper contained a full description of the fabric of the church, including particulars of the contents of the roodbuttress, and the light they threw upon the position of the rood-loft, as well as of the traces of fresco-painting discovered during the recent church repairs. There was also attempted a history of the building from the twelfth century, and of the general alterations in the arrangements for the services, drawn partly from local knowledge, but partly and principally from the examination and records of other churches, especially of Devonshire.

It is now proposed to give an account of the furniture and fittings of our parish church, including the tower; of the churchyard and its associations, &c.; and to adopt the same general plan as that already followed with respect to the main building, viz., to give a full description, as well as to trace the history-illustrated from various sources-of each of the subjects brought under notice, including some, as in the instance of chained books, that have passed into desuetude. We commence with the pews, certainly the most striking and ornamental objects in the church.

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PEWS. Originally all parish churches contained fixed seats (sedilia and stalls) in that portion of the building set apart for

1 The abbreviated titles of works quoted are similar to those of the former paper. (D. A. xxiii. 240.)

The writer begs to acknowledge the receipt of much information and assistance from the vicar, the Rev. W. F. Green, as well as from the senior church warden, Mr. J. C. Palmer.

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