A Butcher Returns to Butchers Row

We intend to open our butcher’s shop this spring in the iconic Butchers Row in Barnstaple. Fifty years ago Butchers Row was full of butchers selling everything from woodcock and partridges to ribs of beef, chitterlings, hogs pudding, sausages and tripe, but, over the years, numbers have dwindled, and the last left a couple of years ago.

Butchers Row was originally conceived as part of a grand design for the town centre in Victorian times. There would be a livestock market on one side of the High Street, on the other a huge pannier market, an abattoir to deal with the animals sold in the market, and a Butchers Row running the whole length of the pannier market with an intervening roadway to allow deliveries.

The layout was based on the markets that had developed in the middle of Barnstaple since mediaeval times. After all, Barnstaple lays claim to having been granted the status of a free borough going back to the time of King Athelstan before the Norman Conquest! However, it was in 1855 that the magnificent new structures were built by R.D. Gould, including the Butchers Row.

These buildings, now grade II listed, are cleverly designed and have stood the test of time. All the Butchers Row shops are north facing with high ceilings to ensure air circulation and an extensive canopy, both protecting shoppers from the rain and ensuring that the meat and other perishable produce never get the heat of the sun. While nowadays we have the most modern chillers to ensure our meat is kept fresh, the Victorians built it into the design

Our new butchers shop will be at number 9 Butchers Row and will be opening in April under the sign of “Top Meadow Farm” organic and local produce. Our two master butchers, Pete Dymond and Terry Lukins will be on hand to help you to choose the best cuts. We look forward to serving you.

Welcome back to Butchers Row !