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Bridestowe, a parish in the southern division, hundred of Lifton, 1-1/2 miles southwest of Sourton, 6 miles southwest of Oakhampton (which is in the Northern Division, Hundred of Black Torrington)... The living is a rectory, in the archdeaconry of Totness, and diocese of Exeter...and in the patronage of the Bishop of Exeter. The church is dedicated to St. Bridget... (1) "... 5661 acres of land, including Coombe-Ball, Watergate, Fernworthy, Bidlake, many scattered houses, and a large tract of moorland hills, in which are the lead and copper mines of Wheal-Mary, Wheal-Newton, &c. The manors and their resident owners are, Cobham-Wick and Blatchford, J.G. Newton, Esq.; and Leaford, S.C. Hamlyn, Esq.; but J.M. Woollcombe, Esq., the Rev. J. Woollcombe, and many smaller owners, have estates in this parish. Millaton, a handsome mansion, with tasteful grounds, is the seat of J.G. Newton, Esq., . . . Leawood, the seat of S.C. Hamlyn, Esq., is a fine old mansion, which was long the seat of the Calmady family. . . . The Church (St. Bridget,) is a small antique fabric, with a tower and six bells, and several neat monuments. . . . (2)

1086 Bridestow, Devonshire Domesday Survey. "Bidestou [Bridestowe] Ralph de Pomeroy from Baldwin the Sheriff. 135 sheep." (3)

1332 Bridestow. Devonshire Lay Subsidy Rolls William DE COMBE 2s

The Visitation of Devonshire, 1620 (4)

BIDLAKE. Arms: Gules, a fess between three birds argent.

Rafe, of Combe Bristowe, purchased from WARREN, of Sicaville, whose heire Mr. KELLIE of Kellie now is, all his lands, rents and services in Bidlake Mill, and the wood appertaining to Bidlake, with all its liberties, for it is within Venfield, and other the appurtenances to the same land belonging; and John KELLY, son of Sir John KELLY, Knt., Ao.2 E 2, being Ao 1309, having purchased and seene the lands purchast, decreed, ratified, & confirmed the same by his own deed with warrantise generall to the said Rafe of COMBE.

Geffere BIDLAKE had from John MAYNARD and Robt. TRECARELL (being his own ffeoffees in trust) a regarnt made to him for time of his life of all his lands in Wester Bidlake, and Thruselton, and after his death to John BIDLAKE, his sonne, and Alice his wife, the da. of Rich. DE COMBE, A. 9, H.44.

John BIDLAKE, son of John, had from Wm. of COMBE, son of Rafe of COMBE, a graunt in fee simple of a tenement with the appurtenances in Thruselton, ye wh. tenement ye said Wm. had by ye death of his brother Nicholas made to him the said John by the name of John BIDLAKE my sonne and his heires for ever. And by this it showeth that this Nicholas died without issue, clearly, for the words in the deed be these: - Quod ego Willms DE COMBE habui successionem hereditati post morten Nicholai de Combe fratris mei.

Willm, son of Rafe DE COMBE, had a feoffment indented pro Jefferie of Milliton, parson of the church of Lew Trenchard, and Rich. of Lidford, parson of the church of Aisburie, which intailed all their land in Combe within the parish of Bridestow and Asburie in the parish of Thruselton, with common of pasture in all the land marsh of Burley with their appurtenances in this sort, - first, that the same Willm should have it for the terms of his life, the remainder after his death unto his son Willm in tale generall, and if Willm the son of Willm died without issue, then it should go to Rafe, the brother of the said Willm, in tale generall, and if the same Rafe died without issue, then it should remaine to John, brother to the said Willm and Rafe, and if John died without issue, unto the right heirs of the said Rafe of COMBE for ever. Ao 5 E. 3.

John BIDLAKE had a ratificac'on made by Hen. KELLY, son of Rich. KELLY of Kelly, of the graunt made by the auncester Warren of Sicaville to Rafe of COMBE, whose estate the same John BIDLAKE had in the lands of Wester BIDLAKE, etc., with warrantise against all men. 32 H. 6, Ao 1459.

John BIDLAKE had from the pope's legat a dispensac'on to make lafall the marriage betweene him and Jone COMBE, were cosins of ye 4 degree, and on either partie not past, temp. H. 6, 32. 7 Calend Augusti Pontif. Din. Nichi papae 5 Ao. 7.

Thomas BIDLAKE, of Bidlake in ye countie of Devon, gave to John ROPER, then the King's Atturnie Generall, John WISE, gent., Tho. HAD, gent., John PIKE, all his messuage, lands, tenements, rents, reversions, and services, with all appurtenances in Bidlake, Cafford, Fernworthie, Wodforde, and Burleighe, the manor of Bradstowe Weeke, and Rowden in fee simple, to the use of the same Tho. BIDLAKE and Catherin his wife, which Catherin was the daughter of Tho. HADD, of the countie of Kent, who married Elizab., sister of the said John ROPER of Kent, and to the heires of their bodies lafully begotten, and for default of such issue, of others as appeareth by the indenture. Ao. 1448.

Hen. BIDLAKE, son of Thomas, at his age of yeares, or thereabout, was taken ward at Thorne, in the parish of St. Mary Awtin, fro Jo. COKE, Esq., who married Katherin, the widow of Thomas, by Georg ROLL, gent.

BIDLAKE [Generation Numbers have been added for clarity]

1 Rad'us DE COMBE Bridstow
  2 Nichus DE COMBE fil. et her. s.p.
  2 Willmus DE COMBE =
    3 Rad'us ob. s.p.
    3 Willmus DE COMBE ob. s. p.
    3 John DE BIDLAKE =
      4 Geffrey DE BIDLAK [sic] =
        5 John DE BIDLAKE = Alice d. of Rich. DE COMBE
          6 John BIDLAKE = Jone COMBE
            7 Thomas BIDLAKE = Catherin d. of Thomas HADD of Kent
              8 Henry BIDLAKE ob. 20 Aprilis, 1604 = Anne d. of Roger DENNIS of Sussex
                9 John BIDLAKE = Elizab. d. of Roger LONGFORD of German's Wick in Devon
                  10 John BIDLAKE 2 = Mary, d. of Oliver DINHAM
                    11 Elizabeth unica filia, aet 3.
                  10 Willms BIDLAKE of BIDLAKE = Agnes, d. of Ric. STURE of Morley
                    11 Henry fil. & her., 8; 
                    11 Thomas 2, aet unius anni.
                    11 Anna, aet. 6.
                  10 Grace = John DAVY of Sanford by Crediton.
                    11 John
                    11 Robert Catherin
                    11 Anna 
"Entered, not signed."

(Extracted by Combs Researcher Thom Mont from THE PUBLICATIONS OF THE HARLEIAN SOCIETY, VOLUME VI, FOR THE YEAR MDCCCLXXII, THE VISITATION OF THE COUNTY OF DEVON IN THE YEAR 1620, Edited By Frederic Thomas Colby, B.D., F.S.A., London, 1872)

Notes: It appears that the original line became the surnames DE COMBE and DE BIDLAKE and eventually COMBE and BIDLAKE. This lineage is discussed in the manuscript, "The History of the Coumbe's of Devonshire and Cornwall", these Combs being near the border of Cornwall. Reference is also made in this manuscript to an error in the above Visitation, which has not yet been compared line by line with the manuscript.


  1. A Topographical Dictionary of England, Samuel Lewis, S. Lewis and Company, London, 1831; and parishinfo.mdb by Terry Lawson, Gerry Lawson and Derek Boys.
  2. White's Devonshire Directory, 1850, Bridestowe, GenUKI
  3. Combs &c. Devonshire Domesday Surveys
  4. Combs &c. Visitations

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