Bere Alston is located within West Devon local authority area. Historically it formed part of Roborough Hundred. It falls within Tavistock Deanery for ecclesiastical purposes. The Deaneries are used to arrange the typescript Church Notes of B.F.Cresswell which are held in the Westcountry Studies Library. Disfranchised borough in the parish of Bere Ferrers.
A parish history file is held in Tavistock Library. You can look for other material on the community by using the place search on the main local studies database. Further historical information is also available on the Genuki website
Maps: The image below is of the Bere Alston area on Donn's one inch to the mile survey of 1765.
On the County Series Ordnance Survey mapping the area is to be found on 1:2,500 sheet 111/10,11 Six inch (1:10560) sheet 111SW,SE
The National Grid reference for the centre of the area is SX448668. On the post 1945 National Grid Ordnance Survey mapping the sheets are: 1:10,000 (six inch to a mile: sheet SX46NW,NE, 1:25,000 mapping: sheet Explorer 108, Landranger (1:50,000) mapping: sheet 201. Geological sheet 348 also covers the area.
Extract from Devon by W.G.Hoskins (1954), included by kind permission of the copyright holder:
Bere Alston, now a small town and the principal part of the parish [of Bere Ferrers], originated in the time of Edward I as a mining settlement. The silver-lead mines were worked here from the 1290s intermittently down to the late 19th century Reginald de Ferrers obtained a market and fair here in 1295, and shortly afterwards set up a borough. As a parliamentary borough from 1584 to 1832, Bere Alston returned a remarkable number of eminent men, including Lord Chancellor King and Sir George Beaumont.