North Devon Coast

National Landscape

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St Marys – Mortehoe Parish Church

There is evidence to suggest that human habitation in Mortehoe could go back to the pre-historic period. A Bronze age ‘Ridgeway’ begins at Morte Point. Today’s roads follow this pre-historic route to Blackmoor Gate and join the Great Somerset Ridgeway near Lynton. First evidence of a stone church at Mortehoe originates from 1170, when it is thought that William de Tracey founded a church as a penance for his part in the murder of Thomas Beckett (Archbishop of Canterbury). The tower is late twelfth century in date, constructed on fresh foundations in an enlargement of the 1170 building.