The North Devon Journal Archive

The largest collection we hold by far is the archive of the local newspaper the North Devon Journal. We hold some 133 volumes of the original newspapers which cover over 120 years of news and events in the North Devon area. The Journal was first published in July 1824 and we hold the first full …

Chivenor & the Torrey Canyon

Today marks the 50th anniversary of RAF Chivenor's involvement in the effort to prevent the oil pouring out of the stricken tanker, Torrey Canyon, drifting to land. In the days leading up to the Torrey Canyon's grounding the local newspapers reported on several vessels being caught out in the rough seas and holes being punched …

Behind the Scenes…Shelving Project part one: It’ll get worse before it gets better

If you've been following us on social media you will have seen that we are closed to the public for a fortnight while we carry out some essential work in our stack. For the last 29 years, our North Devon Journal newspapers have sat on the shelving unit which was built for us before we …

Welcome to 2017

With a new year come new challenges and changes for the North Devon Athenaeum. Last year the way we work with the North Devon Record Office changed as did the public area we share with them. This year will hopefully see some exciting changes behind the scenes. We will be closed in early February to …

Discover the Effects of Beeching’s Axe…On Our Shelves!

Our Assistant Librarian, Sandi, takes a look at the effects of Dr Beeching's closure of the Railways in North Devon... This year sees the fiftieth anniversary of the closure of the Devon and Somerset Railway, the rural line that connected Barnstaple and Ilfracombe to Bristol and the rail network to the rest of the country. …

The Priscott Twins

Fred and Reg Priscott, twin brothers, served with the 1st 6th Devons in both India and Mesopotamia during the First World War. Born 18th October 1895, in Barnstaple, they were the Regiments only serving twins. Before the war both Frederick John and Reginald James Priscott were working for local furniture maker Shapland and Petter and …