Where there was water and shelter a community would perhaps make base, as first they would have been hunter gatherers.
Some clearing by fire for grazing animals some 5000 years of arming in the Neolithic age followed by a
1000 years of governmental orders and the defining of boundaries.
Arable era caused settlers, and to avoid crop damage by the grazing livestock so they had to fence to control the animals.
Trade movement lead to the making of tracks.
The A30 through Fenny Bridges is on the line of the Roman road called the Fosse Way. The road was cut through a ancient bank topped with a hedge between Ash Farm and Higher Gosford. The bank runs down to the River Otter and back towards Sweethams. It is much older than the Roman road. Parts of ths bank are lost due to farmers re ordering their fields.
One of the earliest roads was the one from Woodbury to Hembury Fort.
The lords of the Manor at the time of the Domesday were absent land Lords, held in high favour by King William.
Ottery St Mary has its charter describing its settlement in 1061. Feniton borders Ottery so we too share this history from Campfield up Tower Hill and the down to the River Tale., and also at Fenny Bridges.
Devon had more pigs than anywhere else, I looked up pig breeds known to have originated in Devon and found the British Lop from Tavistock and possibly the Large Black.
Taxation was by hide a not very consistent measurement, so then One Hundred hides became a judicial area called Hundreds. The Church used this framework to raise funds.
Parish boundaries developed during the C9th to C12th.
Sir John Kennaway was in correspondence with Talaton Parish as to the River Tale boundary being changed by the flow of the water in 1844.
Mrs Frances Rose-Troupe The Anglo-Saxon Charter of Ottery St Mary printed in the Devon Trans. 1939 Vol 71.
Maintaining roads was the responsibility of the parish, Ottery got off lightly as the two Fenny Bridges were in the Feniton Parish!
George Herbert's (1593 - 1633) description of Rogation Sunday:
“1. a blessing of God for the fruits of the field:
2. Justice in the preservation of the bounds;
3. Charitie, in living, walking and neighbourliy accompanying one another, with reconciling of differences at that time, if they be any;
4. Mercie, in relieving the poor by a liberal distribution of largess which at that time is or oght be made.
Long wands are shown in some photos and even they waded in the river seemly dressed in Sunday suits!!