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Interesting or famous people with connections to Exeter

Page updated 4th July 2020

Use the links for Police Officers 20thC, Police Officers 19thC, Mayors, Sheriffs, Recorders and Bishops of Exeter.

Sir Thomas Dyke Acland (1787-1871) MP for Devon 1812-1818 and North Devon 1837 to 1757. His home was Killerton House, Broadclyst, where John Veitch was employed, to landscape the gardens. In May 1844, Acland announced, to an interested House of Commons, that he had left Exeter at 5pm that afternoon and was speaking to the House at 10pm the same day, using the new railway from Exeter. His statue can be found in Northernhay Park.
Sir William Adams (17831827), was an oculist who after he was elected MRCS, moved to Exeter to practice. He helped to found the West of England Infirmary for eye disease, and was a surgeon there. Between 1807 to 1810 he split his time between Exeter and Bath, before returning to London in 1810.

Charles Babbage - father of computing
Alan Ball - World Cup winning footballer
Sabine Baring-Gould (1834-1924) born in Exeter, he was an Anglican priest. An English antiquarian, novelist and eclectic scholar. His family home was Lewtrenchard Manor near Okehampton, Devon, although he lived in Dixs Field. He penned several hymns, the best-known being "Onward, Christian Soldiers" and "Now the Day Is Over".
John (Johan) Baring - wool merchant
John Baring II - merchant, banker and Member of Parliament
Cliff Bastin - Exeter City, Arsenal and England footballer
Stephen Bell - mountaineer
Rabbi Lionel Blue - broadcaster and writer
Sir Thomas Bodley - founder of the Bodlein Library
St Boniface - German saint educated in Exeter
Sir John Bowring - polymath, diplomat
Andrew Brice - early journalist and rebel
Isambard Kingdom Brunel - engineer
Dame Audrey Charlotte Georgiana Buller - helped found St Loye's Training College. New
General Sir Redvers Buller VC - soldier
"Tony" Burrows (born 1942) was born in Exeter. He is a British session singer, providing vocals on Edison Lighthouse's "Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)" (1970); White Plains' "My Baby Loves Lovin'" (1970); The Pipkins' novelty song "Gimme Dat Ding" (1970); and The First Class' "Beach Baby" (1974).

Michael Andrew Caines, MBE (born 1969) was born in Exeter, and adopted into a local family. He is part owner of the Royal Clarence Hotel (Abode) and is the head chef at Gidleigh Park Hotel. As a rising young chef, he lost his right arm in a car crash in 1994, a disability that he has shrugged off with some alacrity, to become one of the most successful in his field.
Major Herbert Augustine Carter VC - soldier
Wilfrid Lawson Chambers - a lost mariner
Eleanor Coade - inventor and business woman
Paul Collings - Waterloo veteran and innkeeper
David Collins - first governor of Tasmania
Tommy Cooper - comedian and magician

Charles Dickens - campaigning Victorian writer
John Dinham - the son of a farm bailiff at Powderham Castle, he born at Kenton in 1788. He worked as a grocer and a jeweller, becoming rich. He built the Free Cottages at Mount Dinham, and funded the Rack Street Infant School. After his death in 1861, he left 21,000 to charitable causes. See his statue.
Sir Francis Drake - adventurer and seaman

Sidney Endacott - artist and wood carver

Richard Ford - author of A Hand-Book for Travellers in Spain

John Gendall - artist of historic Exeter
William Gibbs - of Tyntesfield
George Gissing - writer
James Green - County Surveyor and architect
Phyllis Grimes - RAF aircraft mechanic

Revd. T. B. Hardy, VC, MC, DSO - a front line, First World War chaplain
Francis Hayman (1708-1776) was an English painter and illustrator who became one of the founding members of the Royal Academy in 1768 and later its first librarian.
John Hayward - architect of the Royal Albert Memorial Museum and St Luke's College, All Hallows on the Wall (since demolished), and the Lower Market.
Harry Hems - ecclesiastical stone and wood carver
Princess Henrietta Anne - daughter of Charles I
Nicholas Hilliard - miniature portrait painter
George Hollis VC - farrier in the 8th Hussars
John Hooker (c. 15251601) was a lawyer and chamberlain of Exeter. He is remembered for his Chronicles, or history of the city.
Richard Hooker - religious theoretician
Professor W G Hoskins - writer, historian and broadcaster
William Hunt - Hero of the Theatre Royal Fire

John Frederick Thomas Jane - publisher of Jane's Fighting Ships
Winslow Jones was born in 1816, and became an Exeter solicitor. He was one of those who is credited with helping to found the Royal Albert Memorial Museum. He was also listed as one of the first members of the 1st Exeter & South Devon Volunteer Rifle Corps in 1852.

Fred Karno - impressario and Chaplin discoverer
Tony Kellow (1952) footballer who he joined Exeter City from Falmouth Town in 1976. He went to Blackpool, but returned to Exeter in 1980, again left for Plymouth in 1983, returning to Exeter until 1988. He was the club's highest goal scorer, worked as commercial manager at City, and also ran the Clifton Arms and Eagle Tavern.
Gene Kemp - children's writer
George Canning Kingdon (1828-1902) was the youngest brother of Kent Kingdon of Taddyforde, George Canning was also a cabinet maker.
Kent Kingdon - cabinet maker and RAMM benefactor
Nurse Emily Knee - Awarded the George Medal after the blitz
Samuel Kingdon & Iron Sam Kingdon - merchant and foundry owner

Thomas Latimer - reforming journalist
John 'Babbacombe' Lee - reprieved murderer
Bishop Leofric - the only Saxon Bishop of Exeter
Dr Charles Newton Lovely founder of the Exeter Workman's Dwelling Company

Chris Martin - rock musician with Coldplay
Clare Morrall - Booker Prize shortlisted author New
David Miller Muir - pioneering radiologist and engineer

William Oxenham VC - buried in Exeter

Richard Parker - naval mutineer
William Pett - first Chief Officer of the City Fire Brigade
Peter Phillips and Zara Phillips - Queen's grandson and granddaughter
Mr C J Phipps - The theatre architect, who designed the Victoria Hall and the Theatre Royal in Longbrook Street. Both burnt down, and he was severely discredited when the destruction of the latter resulted in the loss of 188 lives.
Robert Pople - proprietor of the New London Inn and Mayor three times
Dick Pym - Exeter City and Bolton Wanderers goalkeeper

Octavius Ralling - architect and artist. COnsultant in saving ST Nicholas Priory by the City Council
John Rowe - Boston Tea Party rebel
J K Rowling - Harry Potter author
Danny La Rue - female impersonator

Lieutenant Richard Douglas Sandford VC - submarine commander
Thomas Sharp - Town Planner
Thomas Shapter - doctor and cholera historian
Walter Percy Sladen - marine biologist
Frank Shooter - Hero of the Exe who saved hundreds from drowning.
John Graves Simcoe - founder of Toronto
Robert Stone (1516-1613), born in Alphington, Devon, he was a composer and member of the Chapel Royal. Among his best-known works is the setting of the Lord's Prayer, written around 1550
E B Stephens - 19th-Century sculptor
George 'Stil' Stillings - cartoonist and entertainer
Whitney Willard Straight - aviator and racing driver

William Temple - Archbishop of Canterbury and radical preacher
Artful Thomas - local personality from the early 20th century
Peter Thursby - art teacher and architectural sculptor
Titanic Victims - four who died on the Titanic from Exeter
Charlotte Treadwin - Honiton Lace maker and expert in the craft

Irene and Violet Vanbrugh - Actress sister, sand daughters of the Rev. Prebendary Barnes of Heavitree New
James Veitch (1792-1863) son of John Veitch, he became the prime mover in the Veitch Nursery, expanding the business by purchasing 25 acres near Mount Radford, and building Gras Lawn. One of his sons established Veitch's at Chelsea, the other ran the business in Exeter.
John Veitch - nurseryman and tree expert

Charles Wescombe - Sheriff of the County and City of Exeter 1868. Born in Paris Street, in 1828, the son of a bricklayer, he went to St Sidwell's School. He was the owner of the Exeter and Plymouth Gazette and the London, Globe newspapers. He was an influential figure in setting up the Royal Albert Memorial Museum. After he died in 1869, it was found he had funded the purchase of shares and his newspapers with borrowed money and he was bankrupt.
Harry Weslake - automotive engineer and motor cyclists
F J Widgery - artist and Mayor of Exeter
Henry Wykes - photographer of Exeter

Thom Yorke - rock musician with Radiohead
Professor Joyce Alice Youings - historian New
Will Young - Pop Idol winner

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