History, tourist information, and nearby accommodation
No one knows for certain when the dovecote was built, but it may have served as a watchtower for nearby Bruton Abbey as well as supplying the monks with food. The interior has 200 nesting boxes for pigeons, which gives rise to its alternative name 'The Pigeon Tower'.
The dovecote is made of local stone dressed with stronger Doulton stone. It is square in plan, standing three storeys high, though all the interior flooring and the roof have disappeared. There are gables on all four sides and an arched doorway on the north-east face.
You can see the remains of a fireplace inside - very unusual if it was only a dovecote, for the pigeons wouldn't need a fire! The most likely explanation is that there was a late medieval building here and it was later converted into a dovecote, possibly by the Berkeley family who bought Bruton Abbey after the Dissolution of the Monasteries.
Evidence for use as a watchtower is scanty; an 18th-century sketch shows the dovecote with a chimney on the roof, so it was definitely used for some kind of habitation.
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About Bruton Dovecote
Address: Stourhead Estate, Warminster, Somerset, England, BA10 0NS
Attraction Type: Historic Building
Location: On the hilltop above Bruton village. The MacMillan Way trail runs beside the dovecote.
National Trust - see also: National Trust memberships (official website link)
Photo Credit: Image is by Tim Tay
We've 'tagged' this attraction information to help you find related historic attractions and learn more about major time periods mentioned.
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16th century (Time Period) -
NEARBY HISTORIC ATTRACTIONS
Heritage Rated from 1- 5 (low-exceptional) on historic interest
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Batcombe, Blessed Virgin Mary Church - 2.9 miles (Historic Church)
Evercreech, St Peter's Church - 3.4 miles (Historic Church)
Maperton, St Peter & St Paul Church - 5.2 miles (Historic Church)
Stourton, St Peter's Church - 5.7 miles (Historic Church)
Stourhead - 6 miles (Garden)
Haynes Motor Museum - 6.1 miles (Museum)
Nearest Accommodation to Bruton Dovecote: