“Branesh (Bradninch) was a borough town
When Exeter was a fuzzy down”
At the time of William the Conqueror’s Domesday Book, Bradninch was the largest in area of forty-six manors in Devon. There is a long and proud association with the Duchy of Cornwall and still today many of the farms surrounding the town are owned by the Duchy and let to tenants. Bradninch had weekly markets on Thursdays and Saturdays and annual fairs on May 6th and October 2nd. A flourishing woollen industry, pillow lace making and farming were the mainstays of the area.

A huge fire in 1666 burnt out much of Bradninch except the Church and a few surrounding cottages. A second fire in the nineteenth century destroyed a greater part of the town again and it was rebuilt mainly in the Georgian style, changing the appearance again. Latterly the different coloured rendering on the houses has brightened up the main thoroughfares of the town.

The Industrial Revolution had the effect of moving the population from places like Bradninch. Many residents now commute to the major local towns and city of Exeter situated 10 miles away.

The paper mill at Hele is the major employer in the area and the Regional Office of the National Trust at Killerton also uses local people in the offices, shop and grounds. One only has to glance at the advertisements in the Bradninch Magazine (published 10 times a year and available from the local shop in Fore Street) to see the list of the many small businesses being carried on in the town.


This website is run by the Bradninch Town Council and is intended to keep our community in touch with the life of our town, with each other and with the rest of the world.  Bradninch is a lively and interesting town, steeped in history, with a wide range of voluntary groups and clubs to suit most ages and interests; this site has details of contacts for these groups and links to their websites.


Contact details for The Town Clerk and Council Members can be found in the contacts list should you wish to bring any matters to our attention and for your interest my monthly report and the minutes of meetings can be seen here, as well as in the monthly Parish Magazine which is available at the Spar Shop.