Bridestowe gets its name from the dedication of its church to St Bridget, an interesting survival of a possible Celtic dedication to this Irish Saint and the pointer to a very old settlement. The present church dates from the 15th Century but the gateway to the churchyard is a Norman arch. This is thought to be the only surviving part of the chapel of the older church which was moved in Victorian times.
Burley Wood is an important historic defensive site. Originally one of the largest iron-age forts in West Devon, after 1066, the Normans built one of their own castles in a corner of the hill-fort site. Its strategic position gave it control over the road to Cornwall, and together with castles at Okehampton and Launceston, would have kept the population from rising against the new Norman lords. The castle would have been of the “motte and bailey” type; an earth mound with a wooden tower on top, with a timber palisade encircling an open area around the mound. Unfortunately, there is no public access to the Burley Wood site.
Both Burford Down and Galford Down offer superb views. The latter was the site of a battle between the Saxons and the Celts which took place in 1825. The victor was King Egbert of Wessex who moved west against a revolt and invasion from Cornwall. The battle spelt the end of the Celtic influence east of the Tamar.
At the green at Lew Mill is an old standing stone, thought to be the upright of an old cross dating back to the 13th century. It was originally found nearby and erected here around 1900. Further on the route passes Lewtrenchard Manor.