The Carys: From Rebels to Riches


Torre Abbey, The King'S Drive, Torquay, Devon, TQ2 5JE

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Torre abbey - The Carys


Created by the South West Heritage Trust and Torre Abbey the exhibition showcases items from the Cary Archive, giving a unique insight into the family.

The Cary Family lived at Torre Abbey for more than 250 years, but they were more than just residents of Torquay, they helped to form it as a place. This exhibition uses documents from the Cary Archive to explore the history of the Cary family and their impact on Torquay.

The rise of the Cary family can be traced back to north-west Devon at the time of the Domesday Book, almost a thousand years ago. The Carys became wealthy and influential again during the Tudor and Stuart periods and continued to add to the land they owned in south Devon. This included acquiring the manors of Coffinswell and Stokenham, Cockington and the former monastery of Torre Abbey.

Join us to find how this family grew throughout history and what they did for Torquay and our surrounding region.

The Cary Archive is held at the Devon Heritage Centre in Exeter. For information on visiting and viewing the archive, visit

Devon Heritage Centre is run by the South West Heritage Trust, which provides archive and heritage services in Devon and Somerset.

Guide Prices

Included in general admission



  • Accessible to Wheelchair Users


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