The Church of St Peter, Brampford Speke,
is on the eastern side of the main road, with the access lane lying
about eighty metres south of The Lazy Toad inn. Located on the red
sandstone cliff overlooking the River Exe, the majority of the
ashlar church building was constructed in the fifteenth century to
replace an earlier building which existed by the early 1100s. The
tall two-stage tower and its north-west half-octagonal stair turret
were added in the same century.
The fourteenth century building was largely
demolished and rebuilt between 1852-1853 by Butcher. Only the tower
was largely left intact. Overall the present building consists of
nave, north aisle, south porch, south transept, north-east organ
chamber, and vestry. It has a four-light Perpendicular west window,
two-light square-headed belfry openings with shallow-chamfered
lights, and a small north window. The 1852 rebuild sections offer a
fine, balanced composition.
St John the Baptist Chapel, Nether Exe, is
on the east bank of the River Exe, roughly midway between Fortescue
Court to the north of Brampford Speke and Kitt's Lane which leads
into Nether Exe itself. The dedication was unknown until Mark Mardon,
who maintained the churchyard, stated 'during the restoration (of
1907) the stonework was removed from the blocked-up arch in the
south wall and behind this was an indication that the church was
dedicated to St John'.
It is likely that the original chapel was founded
by the De Crewes (Crewys or Cruis) family about 1125. It was
mentioned in Domesday Book in 1086. The stone font inside is the
only visible remnant of that original Norman church. The earliest
written record is dated to 1214 and involves correspondence with Sir
Richard de Cruis regarding the chaplain, when the church was
connected to St Nicholas Priory in Exeter and was joined to the
parish of Brampford Speke (see above).
The present simple structure was built in stone
in the late fifteenth century to replace the Anglo-Saxon building.
The parish is an extremely small one. The building was renovated
around 1890. And again in 1907. More recent renovation work on the
church was completed in 2008. It consists of chancel and nave with a
continuous roof, south porch, and vestry. The church is constructed
of volcanic trap rock which has been extracted from the Raddon
Quarry near Thorverton.
The former Upexe Chapel stands on the
western side of a dead-end lane which leads due north-by-north-east
from the centre of this hamlet, reachable from the junction on the
west flank of a private house and the neighbouring Pale Farm Tyrkeys
establishment. With no dedication it was founded as a chapel-of-ease
in 1887-1888, and remained in use until 1936, after which it was
converted into workman's cottages. The piscina stood for a time in
the staircase of one of them.