Category Archives: Topsham


Monmouth Hill


Topsham is a village/small town on the eastern bank of the River Exe just 4 miles or so from Exeter’s city centre. Since 1966 it has officially been part of Exeter, but its distinctive character makes it feel very different from its larger neighbour.

It started out as a Roman settlement and developed as a port which grew in importance following the construction of the weir at Countess Wear. Even with the arrival of the canal in 1566 it still prospered as trade boomed with the Dutch who came for Devon wool. The Dutch influence can be seen all over Topsham with gable-fronted houses, some of which were built with the bricks that were used as ballast for their ships.

The port is no longer vital to Topsham’s prosperity as it has now become a desirable place to live for people who like to live near the city but not in it.

The River Exe and the surrounding marshes have an abundance of birdlife, and places like Bowling Green Marsh are protected habitats for the large flocks of waders, geese and migratory birds that also make Topsham their home.

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