Powderham Castle

This is our local castle! We go there quite often because even when Powderham Castle itself is closed, the shops, forge and plant centre are open, not to mention the lovely cafe.  It is a wonderful place to visit at any time and within 10 minutes drive of Sandays. We even bought our Christmas turkey from there.

We have done the castle tour several times and found it really interesting and entertaining. It is a lovely place with enough interesting features to keep children engaged as well as adults. The gardens and big walled farm / play area (with a huge play fort/castle) are also impressive.

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Powderham Castle and Deer Park

Powderham Castle is located in the very pretty village of Kenton. Kenton’s recorded history can be traced back to the Domesday survey of 1086 and the eye catching Anglican church of “All Saints” was built around 1360, although earlier buildings may have existed. The bell tower at All Saints houses 6 bells which are rung regularly, and it is sometimes possible to enjoy the views from the top.

When Powderham Castle is open it is possible to explore one of England’s oldest family homes and enjoy many extra facilities aimed at making the experience a brilliant family day out. Located by the side of the Exe estuary there are wonderful views from the castle across the deer park.


600 Years of History

The castle has been in the Courtney family since 1325 and such has a long an interesting history. Perhaps one of the most significant aspects of this history for today’s visitors to South Devon is that in 1844 The South Devon Atmospheric Board Gauge Railway was constructed through Powderham Park on its way from Exeter to Dawlish. Isambard Kingdom Brunel, the famous Victorian designer, was the Chief Engineer and a business colleague of Lord Courtenay. Together they had the foresight to select the flat estuary route through Devon for the railway, rather than the traditional route over the hills of Dartmoor.

Brunel was also responsible for designing the road, which still runs from Powderham village to Starcross on the eastern side of Powderham deer park. The very first passengers were taken from Exeter to Dawlish on the Whit weekend of May 1846. In 1876 The South Devon Railway became part of The Great Western Railway and in 1892 the broad gauge line was changed to the standard gauge used today.

Events at Powderham Castle, Devon

There is a programme of special events throughout the year including concerts (pop and classical), a September food festival, and October safaris through the splendid deer park.

For more information about Powderham Castle have a look at their website: www.powderham.co.uk