Saturday 25th May 2019

The History of Seaton

Stone age, Bronze Age, and Iron Age man has left his mark in and around the seaton area. A farming community existed at Honeyditches in seaton for 4000 years before the romans arrived! The Iron Age hill forts at Seaton Down Hill and Hawksdown Hill are probably the most obvious examples left of pre Roman man. Man has been drawn to this area because of the natural resources it provides. The Salt Marshes at Seaton have been an important source of salt. The Sea and river Axe a source of food and the estuary (now silted up) and harbour a source of trade with the continent.

During the Roman period Seaton was an important port. Below St. Gregory's Church roman moorings have been found and at Honeyditches there is the remains of avery interesting Roman Villa and Bath House. The famous roman road, The Fosseway, starts in the Seaton area.

During Saxon times Seaton was know as Fleet, the Saxon word for Creek. The town of Fleet was founded by Saxon Charter 1005 AD, making 2005 Seaton's 1000th Birthday. In the Domesday book of 1086 AD Fleet belonged to the priory of Horton an was later taken over by Sherbourne Abbey. Later the town became know as Seaton which means 'Sea Farm'.

The Sea has always played a part in the history of Seaton. To protect the country from invasion, in the 14th Century a large fort was built on the Sea front. By the time of the Napoleonic Wars of the 19th Century Seaton had its own Martello Tower. Ship building and fishing also were once major industries in Seaton but have all but ceased.

With the arrival of the Railway in 1860's Seaton saw rapid expansion into a Edwardian Sea-side resort, and as today tourism became a major industry in the Town. A bridge and toll house were built over the river Axe. Both of these are listed buildings, the bridge being the first concrete bridge in the country.

For more information about Seaton's History visit the Seaton Museum Web-site. » »