Archive in Devon Heritage Centre

‘Brian’s insatiable curiosity and eye for detail meant that he noticed, recorded, understood and explained in drawings of parts of buildings and their accessories what most of us would overlook. His watercolours of whole buildings are of a different order and capture the spirit and reality of buildings in a way that archaeology does not aim to do.’   Jo Cox, Devon Building Group

Between 1982, when Brian and Marcia moved to Devon, to his death in 2014, Brian made many sketches, drawings, surveys, plans and paintings of Devon buildings and local life. These included buildings removed during the construction of Roadford Lake, a reservoir constructed in the early 1980s.

After Brian’s death, many of this work was given to the Devon Archives and Local Studies at the Devon Heritage Centre, Sowton, Exeter as the Blakeway Archive.

This website showcases, in low resolution photographs, much of what is available in the Blakeway Archive.

Altogether, more than 70 buildings are represented on this website, some only through details. With life and landscape also represented, there are nearly 400 photographs.

The (old) map of Devon above and below shows the geographical spread of the buildings represented. Some pins represent clusters of buildings. Key to pin colours:

  • red and white – Germansweek and the nearby area
  • black – Longhouses
  • yellow – National Trust
  • pink post-it labels – Michael Laithwaite vernacular architecture course
  • blue and green – other buildings

The full archive can be viewed and used for research by visiting Devon Archives and Local Studies at the Devon Heritage Centre, Sowton, Exeter.