BERRY Pomeroy, near Totnes, one of the last castles to be built in England, and reputedly one of the most haunted, is the subject of the Devon Rural Archive’s lecture for 2017.

Berry Pomeroy Castle and Deer Park’, an illustrated talk, will be given by independent archaeological contractor, Stewart Brown, on Thursday, February 2, at 7pm.

Dating from the late 15th century and set within a deer park, Berry Pomeroy was the home of the Seymour family and was used more as a hunting lodge than a military castle. Stuart’s talk will explore the history and archaeology of the castle before it was abandoned in the late 17th century.

‘Berry Pomeroy was bought from the Pomeroy family in 1547 by Edward Seymour, first Duke of Somerset and Protector to the young Edward VI.

‘His son Sir Edward Seymour came to live there in 1560 and transformed the living quarters into a four storey mansion, though he kept the castle’s gatehouse and defending walls,’ explains Abi Gray, DRA’s resident archaeologist.

‘Later, around 1600, his grandson had ambitious plans to add two ranges with wide terraces overlooking the valley below, but these were never completed and the unfinished house remained a “white elephant”, until it was deserted in the late 17th century, when the family moved away to live in another of their residences at Maiden Bradley in Wiltshire.’

Stewart Brown began his career with Exeter Museum’s Archaeological Field Unit before working with Oxford University and Historic England. He has written numerous articles about archaeology sites in Devon including Buckfast Abbey, Totnes Castle and Exeter Cathedral.

Stewart’s talk will take place in the lecture theatre at the DRA, Shilstone near Modbury, PL21 0TW, and refreshments will be available from 6.30pm. Tickets are £5 each and booking is recommended. To book please call Abi on 01548 830832 or email [email protected]. Alternatively, for further information visit