Salvation Army Temple (or Exeter
Temple), fills the block between Friar's Walk and Lucky Lane,
with Friar's Gate on its northern flank. The site was initially
owned by Quakers who temporarily moved away from their Magdalen
Street meeting house (below) in 1832. The building they erected
here was far too vast and expensive to maintain so in 1868 they
sold it to the Salvation Army as their Temperance Chapel.
Extensive refurbishments were carried out in 1977-78.
Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses stands
above the north side of Holloway Street, overlooking the Friar's
Walk junction. When they took on this site seems not to have been
recorded, but it was originally built as Holloway Street School in
1876. This was expanded in 1901, but closed in 1958, after which it
became St Nicholas Catholic School. When that moved away in 1977 the
school premises served various purposes and were divided up before
the Witnesses arrived.
St Leonard's Church sits inside the
southern v-shape formed by the junction between Topsham Road and
Larkbeare Road. The first church on this site was built either by
Richard of Redvers, first earl of Devon, or his son in the early
1100s. It gained a parish in 1222, but a priest there - Master Lucas
- was implicated in a murder in Cathedral Close in 1283. The
building was entirely replaced in 1566 (shown here in an engraving
by C J G Sprake of 1831).
Exeter's English Civil War Royalist defenders
fortified the church which survived two hundred years until a third
building was erected, in 1833. This was enlarged in 1843 but was
found to be structurally unsound. Demolition followed in 1876 and it
was replaced by the present, fourth church building. Classical in
style it was built to a design by Andrew Patey, thanks to a sizable
gift from important local landowner, Sir Thomas Baring, who owned
most of the parish.
St Mary Magdalen's Hospital stood here on
the south side of Magdalen Street. The hospital was founded well
before 1163, when it gained extra privileges. It continued to care
for lepers (a maximum of thirteen), and still existed in 1757 when
the Jews' Burial Ground (below) was created. Its chapel survived in
1822, but was described as long having been desecrated. The present
barriers may mark part or all of the main building if the OS
1892-1914 map is any authority.
The Jewish Burial Ground stands on the
western flank of the St Mary Magdalen Hospital site (see above).
Marked on the OS 25-inch map of 1892-1914 as 'Jews' Burial Ground',
it was founded as a modern replacement to an entirely lost medieval
burial ground. This had existed until Jews were banished from England
in 1290. The early 1700s saw a small Jewish community reform in Exeter,
which founded this cemetery in 1757 prior to opening a synagogue in
The Dissenters Graveyard lies at the
south-east corner of Magdalen Street and Bull Meadow Road. When
dissenting (nonconformist) meetings were allowed from the late 1600s
onwards, these congregations also required burial sites. The Quakers
had theirs on a site opposite this (below), while this one for the
'three meetings' (see links) was on ground leased in 1748 from
Wynard's Almshouses (below). It closed in 1854 when municipal
cemeteries replaced burial grounds.
Friends Meeting House (Quakers) is at the
north-west corner of Pavilion Place (Wynadr's Lane). One of the
city's earliest purpose-built nonconformist meeting rooms, it opened
in 1691 but, like others, suffered declining attendances in the
1700s. It was sold in 1832 so that The Pavilion (Baptist)
meeting was opened here in 1835. In 1875-76 the Quakers returned and
built the present house. Magdalen Street Presbyterian Meeting
House nearly adjoined it (now gone).
The Chapel of the Holy Trinity & Maison
Dieu, Wynards Almshouses is on the north side of Magdalen
Street, overlooking the Bull Meadow Road junction and the adjacent
Dissenters Graveyard (see above). Wynard's Hospital (almshouse)
was founded in 1436 for twelve poor, infirm elderly men and a
chaplain. There was some doubt about the survival of the buildings
in 1643, but all were refurbished in 1654. More recently closed,
by 2019 the buildings were on sale.
The Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital Chapel,
Southernhay was formerly in the centre of what is now
Southernhay Gardens, a few metres back from the junction with
Southernhay East. The hospital opened in 1743, and the chapel was
built following a donation to that effect by Arthur Kempe in 1866.
By 1897 two services a day were being held. In later years hospital
services were moved out to new sites at Heavitree and Wonford (the
latter of which also has a chapel).
Eight photos on this page by P L Kessler and
one from the History Files collection. Additional information
from Nonconformity in Exeter, 1650-1875, Allan Brockett,
and from Discovering Exeter 2: St Leonard's, Exeter Civic