Yelverton, Devon

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Houses and Gardens - - 87095.jpg
Grid reference: SX5267
Location: 50°29’3"N, 4°5’15"W
Post town: Yelverton
Postcode: PL20
Dialling code: 01822
Local Government
Council: West Devon
Torridge and West Devon

Yelverton is a large village of West Devon, on the south-western edge of Dartmoor. It has been hailed as one of the most prolific and prosperous villages in south west Devon.

The construction of the railway line, and Yelverton railway station, during the 19th century meant that it became a popular residence for Plymouth commuters - the line was run by the Great Western Railway (GWR). The line is now closed, but the Plym Valley Railway has reopened a section of it.

Yelverton is well known for "the rock" - a large visible mass of stone close to the Plymouth road on the fringe of nearby Roborough Down. It gave its name to the Rock Hotel, built as a farm during the Elizabethan period, but converted in the 1850s to cater for growing tourism in the area. The area to the south and west of the roundabout which everyone regards as the centre of the village was settled in late Victorian and Edwardian times resulting the building in many grand and opulent villas. An area developed at about the same time on an odd shaped piece of land to the south of the Tavistock road is known to all as Leg o' Mutton Corner.

Yelverton has a paperweight museum signposted off the main road.

Second World War airfield

At the beginning of the Second World War, a large airfield was constructed at adjacent Harrowbeer as a fighter station for the air defence of Devonport Dockyard and the Western Approaches. A 19th century terrace of houses, then mostly converted into shops, had to have its upper storey removed to provide an easier approach. One tall building which was not altered was Yelverton Church, but unfortunately the tower was hit by a plane, resulting in a warning light being fitted. The layout of the runways are still very clear and although these are substantially grassed over the many earth and brick protective bunkers built to protect the fighters from attack on the ground, are all still in place. Many American airmen and anti-aircraft battery units were stationed here during the second half of the war.

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