Heritage Open Day at Spiceland Quaker Meeting House
Visit Spiceland’s historic 200-year-old Quaker Meeting House and the burial ground which came into use around 1680. Find out more about the history of Quakers.
The old Meeting House of Spiceland lies deep in the narrow lanes near the border of Devon and Somerset between the Culm Valley villages of Culmstock and Uffculme. It stands simple and dignified in beautiful grounds in the shadow of the Blackdown Hills. 2015 marked the 200th anniversary of the building of the existing Meeting House in 1815. However, as the date of 1670 carved above our entrance doorway attests, our story goes back much further. Why, people ask, do we have a Meeting House in such a remote place? How does Spiceland get its appealing name? To find answers we must go back to the earliest days of Quakerism.
Tradition holds that George Fox preached in the open air in the orchard at Spiceland in times of persecution. We know from his journal that in 1662 he held a ‘blessed meeting’, five miles off the town of Cullompton in Devon on his way to Wellington in Somerset, both places having corporations openly suspicious of Quakers as disturbers of the King’s new government. However, there were many local people associated particularly with the woollen industry, who were willing to brave the military arm of the authorities, to follow their consciences and to gather in peace in a remote place.
Quakers began to use their burial place after the purchase of the land in 1679. As far as we know there are about 600 burials in the period from 1679 to 2005. In keeping with Quaker practise most such interments are unmarked.
No booking required
About 150 yard walk from car park in field to the site. Limited disabled parking adjacent to the Meeting House. The site has rough paths and mown grass.
This event will run in line with local & national government guidelines at the time of the festival.
Visitors are welcome to bring their own refreshments to enjoy on the grounds. Contact for the day: Ali Dominy 07810768557
One and a half miles north east of Uffculme. Brown sign from the A38.
Categories: Guided Activities and Tours, History and Experience Days
- Free Entry
Venue: Spiceland Quaker Meeting House
- Free Entry