Tavistock ( TAV-iss-tok) is an ancient stannary and market town within West Devon, England. It is situated on the River Tavy from which its name derives. At the 2011 census the three electoral wards (North, South and South West) had a population of 13,028. It traces its recorded history back to at least 961 when Tavistock Abbey, whose ruins lie in the centre of the town, was founded. Its most famous son is Sir Francis Drake.