The Throwleigh Archive was conceived in 1999 and since then it has raised awareness of the history and heritage of the village of Throwleigh, on the edge of Dartmoor.
The project has assembled an archive, representing both the heritage and contemporary life of the parish through the collection of hundreds of photographs, artefacts, documents, and sound recordings. Local people of all ages have participated in the gathering of the information, which has been catalogued, recorded and electronically stored, to ensure a permanent record that can be easily updated and accessed.
A grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund has enabled the group to hold public displays at Throwleigh Village Hall showing the material available: the first in 2002, and a second in April 2006.
A book has also also been produced: ‘Throwleigh: Pictures And Memories From a Dartmoor Parish’ to provide a collection of some of the best pictures with accompanying text mostly in the form of quotations from oral and written sources. This sold so well that a reprint was necessary, launched at another exhibition in the Village Hall in 2013, and is currently for sale from the Archive.
In 2016, Throwleigh Parish was offered some funding through the Parishscapes project, part of the Heritage Lottery Fund supported Moor Than Meets The Eye scheme, led by Dartmoor National Park Authority. It aims to Conserve and understand Dartmoor and tell the story of the people and landscape over 4,000 years. Within Throwleigh this funding is being utilised to support the work of the Archive and to develop two documentary arts productions:
The first, TheMiss VarwellsThrowleigh was performed in the Village Hall in March 2017. This production was based on a book written in 1938 by Emmie Varwell, Throwleigh, the story of a Dartmoor village. The Archive had a reprint made of this book, and a DVD recording of the production, also currently for sale.
The second production,Colonel Heath’s Hut, picked up the story of the village in the immediate post-war years and took place in March 2018.
People have lived, worked in Throwleigh for thousands of years. The earliest visible remains of past inhabitants are the Bronze Age hut circles just above the village at Shilstone Tor.
Today Throwleigh’s population is around 350, centred around the Church, memorial cross, old forge pond and, recently opened, an “outreach” post office in the church. The Village Hall and Northmore Arms pub are a little distance from the church at Wonson.