The Topsham Charter

A fascinating journey back in time

First documented as a Roman settlement, Topsham was granted a Charter as a town in 1300 by Edward I, developing into a major British port and shipbuilding centre that in its heyday rivalled London. There are Dutch houses from this maritime past, and fine examples of Georgian and Edwardian architecture.

The name ‘Topsham’ possibly comes from a personal name; Toppa’s ham is the hamlet or settlement where Toppa lived.

There are some differences of opinion as to the correct pronunciation of Topsham. Chat to locals and you will hear both Tops-ham or Topsh-am being used.

Between May to September, every Wednesday and Saturday afternoon at 2pm, the public can join a free guided walk around the town. For more information visit the Topsham Museum website.

For further information and reading

Topsham – a short history – explore information on the town including the history of its pubs, street names and buildings.

Topsham Museum –learn all about the fascinating history of Topsham, and refreshments at the Museum’s tea rooms.

GENUKI, Topsham Historical resources for Topsham and its genealogy.

Topsham, Devon, through time Topsham at the Vision of Britain historical gazetteer.

Topsham Society – the society hold various fascinating publications on the history of Topsham.