Dartmoor Brewery

Pub of the Week: The Royal Oak, Heavitree

Posted by Mike C in Jul 2021

If you live in Exeter, or are just visiting for the day, take a ltitle time out to discover the delights of the Royal Oak in Heavitree, an easy 15 minute walk from the City Centre. You can look forward to a warm welcome from your host Rob, an excellent pint of Jail Ale, and a chance to discover the pub's connections with the infamous Dartmoor Prison (which is just a stone's throw from our brewery in Princetown).

This pretty thatched pub - part of the Heavitree Brewery collection - takes pride of place in Heavitree's bustling High Street - once opposite the original Heavitree brewery site. The Royal Oak was badly bomb-damaged in the Blitz, and rebuilt after the war. The place is steeped in history, and has many stories to tell.

In the entrance hall, look out for the actual prison cell door, which came from Dartmoor Prison itself before being installed in the pub. We're not sure what can be found behind the cell door, but it's best to be on good behaviour whilst enjoying your perfect pint of Jail Ale!

Also look out for the tack hanging on the wall in the very pleasant snug. This belonged to Old King - the last working carthorse at Dartmoor Prison, retired in 1957, and you could maybe raise a glass to Old King while you soak up the friendly and traditional atmosphere of this "village pub" close to the city centre.

You'll find a great lunchtime menu of sandwiches and traditional pub favourites at very appetising prices, and a sunny patio from which to watch the world go by. In the cooler months, you can settle beside an open fire.

The Royal Oak
Fore St, Heavitree, Exeter EX1 2RN
01392 431902

Rob, landlord at the Royal Oak

Snug at the Royal Oak

Dartmoor Prison door at the Royal Oak

Old photo of the Royal Oak





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