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• Total 24,103

Plymstock is a civil parish and commuter suburb of Plymouth in the English county of Devon.

The earliest surviving documentary reference to the place is as Plemestocha in the Domesday Book and its name is derived from Old English meaning either "outlying farm with a plum-tree" or, if it is short for Plympton Stock, "outlying farm belonging to Plympton".[1]

Situated on the east bank of the River Plym it is geographically and historically part of the South Hams. It comprises the villages of Billacombe, Elburton, Goosewell, Hooe, Mountbatten, Oreston, Pomphlett, Staddiscombe, Turnchapel and Plymstock proper, the centrally located village after which the parish and suburb is named. The parish church is St Mary and All Saints. The pedestrianised 1960s Broadway consists of a number of shops including one supermarket (Iceland) within the precinct with a Lidl supermarket nearby, three banks, six estate agents and other local amenities including a fire station and a small police station. At Pomphlett there is a Morrisons superstore and drive-through Mcdonalds burger restaurant. The population at the time of the 2001 Census was recorded at 24,103 with 11,652 owner occupied homes in the PL9 area. The total population in 2011 increased to 24,758[2][3]

The local branch railways through the area to Turnchapel and Yealmpton have been removed, the bridges and stations demolished and the land built on. Pomphlett Mill has been demolished and the site used for a roundabout. Pomphlett Creek (shown right), once a popular rowing stretch has been partly filled in and what remains is largely silted up.

Until the 20th century Plymstock was a rural parish but began to develop rapidly just before and after the Second World War as a residential area outside Plymouth but acting as a dormitory area for the city. On 1 April 1967,[4] Plymstock, along with Plympton, was absorbed into the City of Plymouth and today, like Plympton, forms a populous and mostly home-owning south-eastern suburb of the city.

There are numerous public spaces including a huge public sports area at Staddiscombe. There is a major golf club at Staddon Heights and a commercial driving range near Elburton. Strident campaigning to get permission and funding for a local public swimming pool have so far failed. Rowing is available on the river Plym, there is a sailing club at Oreston and a large water-sports centre at Turnchapel. There are public tennis courts at Dean Cross.

There are many state primary schools in the area and two very large Comprehensive Schools, Coombe Dean School and Plymstock School. There are no local independent school options although children who chose to take and get a very high pass in the 11-Plus can attend one of the three grammar schools in Plymouth. In 2008 Coombe Dean School achieved national notoriety after a popular school plan to erect two generating windmills was blocked by local Tory councillors following opposition by residents of surrounding bungalows.[5]

Frequent buses connect most areas of Plymstock with routes across the city linking with the railway station and Derriford hospital. There is a water-taxi linking Mountbatten with Plymouth Barbican.

The area invariably returns a Tory MP reflecting with Plympton a more right wing community than the rest of the city. Gary Streeter is the present Conservative member. It is also part of the South West Devon constituency which encompasses surrounding rural areas of South Devon; separate from the rest of Plymouth, it is, however, under the Plymouth City Council's control.


Childe's Tomb on Dartmoor is the legendary site of the death of Childe who, caught in a snowstorm, killed and disembowelled his horse and climbed inside for shelter, but still froze to death. He left a message to say that the first person to bury him would get his lands at Plymstock. The greedy monks of Tavistock buried him and claimed the lands. The ghosts of monks carrying a bier have supposedly been seen at Childe's Tomb.

Jump up ^ Watts, Victor (2010). The Cambridge Dictionary of English Place-names (1st paperback ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 476. ISBN 978-0-521-16855-7.

Jump up ^ "Plymstock.Radford ward population 2011.Retrieved 15 Feb 2015".

Jump up ^ "Plymstock.Dunstone ward population.Retrieved 15 Feb 2015".

Jump up ^ Moseley, Brian (February 2012). "Plymstock". The Encyclopaedia of Plymouth History. Plymouth Data. Archived from the original on 26 September 2013. Retrieved 14 February 2015.

Jump up ^ "School shuts down its two wind turbines". West Briton. 18 August 2009. Retrieved 8 July 2016.

Jump up ^ Hippisley Coxe, Anthony E. (1973). Haunted Britain. Pub. Hutchinson. ISBN 0-09-116540-7. p. 30.


At certain times of the year tin was brought to one of the four Stannary Towns, plympton, Chagford, Ashburton and Tavistock, for assaying. These were called periods of coinage. The tinners sent the tin ingots by pack-horse to the nearest Stannary Towns The Stannary officials and dealers in tin gathered there and dealers even came from Europe to examine and buy the tin. First the tin was stamped with the owners name and then weighed. Next it was ‘coigned’, that is, a small piece was cut off the corner  with a hammer and chisel and this piece was assayed or checked for purity. The tin was valued and the coinage dues or tax, was paid by the owner. As tin was mainly used in the production of pewter for plates and drinking vessels and as London was the main pewter manufacturing area, most of the tin was sent there.This meant sending by sea as this was obviously the quickest and cheapest method. The main ports were Plympton, Exeter, Morwellham or Dartmouth.

There is known to have been a Plym Bridge here since 1238. The first lay on a rough

track linking the important monastic centres of Plympton - an important town long

before Plymouth existed - and Tavistock.

The present eighteenth-century bridge is built on the remains of an earlier flooddamaged bridge, the arches of which are still visible.

The medieval Chapel of St Mary the Virgin (II) stood beside the bridge. Pope

Nicholas V, writing to the Prior of Plympton in 1450, mentioned the many pilgrims

visiting the chapel and miracles witnessed there.

The chapel disappeared towards the end of the nineteenth-century and now only

a small arch (16) remains beside the road on the other side of the river. This is

believed to be connected with the chapel and contains a broken slate shelf which

probably once held a votive offering such as a statue of a saint.

The first of a number of weirs (3) was built near Cann Quarry in the eighteenthcentury by John Parker, Baron Boringdon of Boringdon Hall. His descendants were

later to live at Saltram House, enjoying high governmental office and ennobled as the

Earls of Morley. A leaf from the weir provided water to run two corn mills at Marsh

Mills. The weir also incorporated a salmon trap which led to disputes with landowners

upstream who were deprived of salmon.

In the nineteenth-century the Plym Bridge area was the scene of intense industrial

activity as the picture of Cann Quarry, above, shows. It contains the remains of several

quarries, quarry workers’ cottages, a small lead-silver mine, a canal and three old

railway lines. The industrialisation was due to a number of factors; the proximity to

Plymouth and its harbours; the river Plym and its tributaries which powered the

waterwheels for pumping, crushing and grinding; and the tock in the valley. This is

predominantly Upper Devonian slate, but there is also a fine-grained rock of volcanic

origin, known as diorite to geologists and ‘elvan’ to quarrymen. The face of Cann

Quarry shows an example of a diorite dyke: a fissure of the stone running through

slate. Both slate and elvan were quarried extensively near Plym Bridge.

There are also seams of metallic ores, including lead, copper, silver, tin, iron and

arsenic, all of which have been worked.