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“An unexpected treat”

Loughwood Meeting House
Ranked #6 of 13 things to do in Axminster
Attraction details
Reviewed October 13, 2013

Having just visited nearby Shute Barton (not listed on TripAdvisor I might add) we called in at Loughwood Meeting House on the way home. The turning is easy to miss, as it is a discreet green noticeboard on the side of the A35 road between Axminster and Honiton, rather than the usual brown one, but once down the lane, a further discreet sign points you left down a cart track, which opens out into a small parking area.
The Meeting House is the thatched building right next door, through a small gate. The door into the building is quirky, in that the handle turns anti-clockwise to open. Inside the fittngs are minimal, although the pews are all beautifully made and fitted together to maximise the space. Interestingly enough, the space under the seats interconnet and I could easily imagine the children of the time either crawling between the pews when they got bored with the services, or rolling a ball or stones to pass the time.
There is a gallery, which is quite steep, but probably the best place to be - certainly in the winter - as downstairs at the back are 2 small rooms which have fireplaces.
This was a Baptist chapel, but looks much like a modern day Welsh Methodist church with the pulpit dominating the whole place.
You do not need to spend long there, but it is a step back in time that should not be missed.

5  Thank Clive R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"national trust"
in 7 reviews
"old church"
in 2 reviews
"worth a visit"
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14 - 16 of 16 reviews

Reviewed September 22, 2013

We are fortunate to have the National Trust to preserve significant sites like this. Strange ...almost ironic...then to come the Loughwood Meeting House at the height of the holiday season and not to encounter even one other person. A flick through the visitors book shows that very few make it here most days. Of course, it feels like a privilege to visit such a unique site when you are the only people there. But, at the same time, it's also a little sad that it is being passed by, by so many.

Whilst you may not meet any 21st century visitors, this place connects you very directly with it's historical habitues. It is a beautiful and historic building, set in picture postcard Devon countryside. The House's blissful tranquility makes it hard to imagine this being a refuge for a persecuted minority. In fact, it's hard not to believe this is a film set. It looks so perfect, with every appearance of having been left untouched, unchanged for the last 300 years. It would have seemed almost normal if someone in 17th or 18th century dress walked right in as we sit in the stalls.

The building houses little more than the tiny chapel, divided into family-sized docks, wooden booths; a pulpit; gallery; clock...and little else. There are one or two other rooms, one with nothing more than the most rudimentary fireplace and a pair of wooden chairs.

If you are anywhere in the area, I would recommend taking 15 minutes to visit the Loughwood Meeting House. You, too, will feel grateful for the work National Trust, keeping us in touch with our past.

3  Thank Mark E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 29, 2012

This is one of my all time favourite chapels. A Baptist meeting house of the late 17thC. Free entry. A perfect example of its kind perched on the triple border of Devon ,Somerset and Dorset. Just stand alone in this place and you can almost touch the 17thC, hear the ghosts of persecuted nonconformists who gathered in this once remote wood every Sunday, some walking 20 miles to be there. It feels more like New England than Devon.
This simple squat building tells a story of truly British tenacity and ultimately reminds us how proud we should be that our country is now a tolerant and diverse nation.

7  Thank foxmeister-10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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