Martock Village Guide
...a large village on the edge of the Somerset Levels offering great scenery and plenty of walking and sightseeing to rejuvenate every visitor.
Sitting as it does on the edge of the Somerset Levels in an area of beautiful countryside and historic events from medieval times there is an abundance of outdoor activities to engage in and sites and attractions to visit.
The village name is believed to derive from Mart, meaning market and the old word ac meaning oak. It is thought an oak tree stood once where the market house now stands. There is a single entry for Martock in the Domesday book where it is referred to as a Saxon Royal Estate under the ownership of Queen Edith. It had 89 tenants but grew rapidly in the followings years to cover local settlements and had over 200 tenants.
In 1247 a grant gave the village a weekly market and it became successful as an agriculture and trading centre. Sail cloth, agricultural implements, steams engines and mass produced wagons and carts were industries dominant in the village.
The village lies 7 miles northwest of Yeovil on the edge of the Somerset Levels. It has the River Parrett trail running through it on its way to meet the West Somerset Coast Path and this offers some wonderful paths and tracks along which to stroll or cycle and take in the fresh air.
There are both Grade I and Grade II listed buildings in Martock, built in the local hamstone which gives them the golden hue which is predominant in the area.
The Treasurers House is one such building owned by the National Trust and designated grade I, it dates from the 13th century with various alterations and extensions.
The church of All Saints is similarly a grade I listed building which was used as a billet by troops of Oliver Cromwell after the Battle of Bridgwater. The church was restored in the 19th century and includes an organ that was previously in Wells Cathedral. It also has unique carved wooden statues in teh eaves and is said to be the second largest church in Somerset.
Things to see and do
Burrow Hill– panoramic views over the Levels and most of South Somerset.
Burrow Hill Cider Farm– Award winning cider and cider brandy to taste and buy. A good place to stop after a walk up Burrow Hill
Local places of interest
East Lambrook Manor Gardens– A Grade 1 listed garden renowned as the premier example of the English cottage garden style and is noted for its specialist collections of snowdrops, hellebores and hardy geraniums.
Stoke sub Hamdon Priory– a 14th century former priests house of the chantry chapel of St Nicholas. The Hamstone building was originally the Provost's Lodging, part of the College Buildings of the Beauchamp Chantry it has been owned by the National Trust since 1946 and is grade I listed.
Ham Hill– 400 acres of open access country park offering views across the Somerset Levels and across to the Mendips Hills and Exmoor. Free guidebooks are available from local tourist centres.
Montacute House– A magnificent glittering 16th century mansion owned by the National Trust. There are formal gardens and tracks leading you through the wider Estate.
Tintinhull House– An attractive 17th century manor house which is available as a holiday let but has 2 floors open to the public. The gardens feature secluded lawns, pools and colourful borders as well as a kitchen garden.
Last Updated: 28 Apr 2015