About us

A part of The Fenwick Charitable Trust; Registered Charity Number 1007957
About the archiveMeet the team

What is The Devon Rural Archive?

We are an independent heritage centre for the study of our county’s buildings and landscapes which first opened to the public in 2009.

Our purpose built Archive is situated in the grounds of Shilstone House near Modbury, above the Shilstone Cafe.  

Our Research Library is bursting with historical information about our county and its people. Our collection consists of historic documents, maps, images, books, journals, and periodicals, as well as a special collection of artefacts, and unpublished material. This all makes us an invaluable resource for anyone interested in local history, and we welcome visitors who simply wish to browse our library, research something specific relating to their home, or undertake academic study. The library is also home to our Family History resources and the reports of our own archaeological research,  Project Donn.

Meet the team

Nicola Stone, Heritage Manager

Nicola joined the Devon Rural Archive in January 2024, after a 17-year career in teaching and then running her own Heritage Consultancy, writing activity plans, learning programmes and audience development plans for organisations seeking funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund. During that time she worked on a funding bid for Seaton Tramway in East Devon, and after securing funding in 2019 she joined the Board of Directors and also took on the role of Learning and Activity Manager to deliver the project. 

Nicola was also Chair of the Board at Sherborne Museum for three years, until she relocated from Dorset to Devon in 2020.


Nicola is supported by a dedicated team of volunteers who help care for our collection, support visitors in accessing the resources and carry out research into different aspects of our county’s heritage. We pride ourselves that the DRA is a friendly and productive place to work, and our existing team of volunteers all speak of the satisfaction that their sessions at the archive give them. If you would like to get involved, then have a chat with one of the team.

Stay in the loop!


Join the DRA Friends to receive the latest news from the archive as well as details of our events and exhibitions by email. Please add office@dra.uk.net to your list of contacts to prevent our messages being banished to your Spam folder.  

Where we are

Devon Rural Archive, Shilstone, Modbury, Devon, PL21 0TW

Call us: 01548 830832

Email us: nicola@shilstonedevon.co.uk