Ancient Monuments

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Wayside cross called Burrow Cross 40m south east of Burrow Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Stoke Canon, Devon

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Latitude: 50.7817 / 50°46'54"N

Longitude: -3.5055 / 3°30'19"W

OS Eastings: 293957.819811

OS Northings: 99098.526339

OS Grid: SX939990

Mapcode National: GBR P1.R0SK

Mapcode Global: FRA 37K0.S45

Entry Name: Wayside cross called Burrow Cross 40m south east of Burrow Farm

Scheduled Date: 3 December 1951

Last Amended: 30 October 1995

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1013614

English Heritage Legacy ID: 27337

County: Devon

Civil Parish: Stoke Canon

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Church of England Parish: Stoke Canon St Mary Magdalene

Church of England Diocese: Exeter


This monument includes a wayside cross called Burrow Cross, standing on a
small triangular traffic island between two minor roads, 40m south east of
Burrow Farm. The cross survives as a roughly cut socket stone, shaft and
boutonne head. The socket stone is octagonal, roughly cut, square at the base
and measures 0.92m long, 0.9m wide by 0.33m high.
The shaft measures 0.35m wide by 0.3m thick and is rectangular in section
with chamfered angles at the base. It tapers slightly upwards and at a height
of 1.17m there is a joint where the boutonne head has been replaced.
The boutonne head measures 0.57m wide at the arms, 0.25m wide at the head, is
0.2m thick and 0.15m high.
The cross is leaning slightly but appears stable. The base was strengthened in
the early 20th century. The boutonne head was found in a nearby hedge by
Reverend F Robson in 1924 and the cross was restored to his memory.
Excluded from the scheduling is the metalled road surface where it falls
within the cross's protective margin, although the ground beneath the road
surface is included.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Wayside crosses are one of several types of Christian cross erected during the
medieval period, mostly from the 9th to 15th centuries AD. In addition to
serving the function of reiterating and reinforcing the Christian faith
amongst those who passed the cross and of reassuring the traveller, wayside
crosses often fulfilled a role as waymarkers, especially in difficult and
otherwise unmarked terrain. The crosses might be on regularly used routes
linking ordinary settlements or on routes having a more specifically religious
function, including those providing access to religious sites for parishioners
and funeral processions, or marking long-distance routes frequented on
Over 350 wayside crosses are known nationally, concentrated in south west
England throughout Cornwall and on Dartmoor where they form the commonest type
of stone cross. A small group also occurs on the North York Moors. Relatively
few examples have been recorded elsewhere and these are generally confined to
remote moorland locations.
Outside Cornwall almost all wayside crosses take the form of a `Latin' cross,
in which the cross-head itself is shaped within the projecting arms of an
unenclosed cross. In Cornwall wayside crosses vary considerably in form and
decoration. The commonest type includes a round, or `wheel', head on the faces
of which various forms of cross or related designs were carved in relief or
incised, the spaces between the cross arms possibly pierced. The design was
sometimes supplemented with a relief figure of Christ and the shaft might bear
decorative panels and motifs. Less common forms in Cornwall include the
`Latin' cross and, much rarer, the simple slab with a low relief cross on both
faces. Rare examples of wheel-head and slab-form crosses also occur within the
North York Moors group. Most wayside crosses have either a simple socketed
base or show no evidence for a separate base at all.
Wayside crosses contribute significantly to our understanding of medieval
religious customs and sculptural traditions and to our knowledge of medieval
routeways and settlement patterns. All wayside crosses which survive as earth-
fast monuments, except those which are extremely damaged and removed from
their original locations, are considered worthy of protection.

Despite restoration, the wayside cross called Burrow Cross 40m south east of
Burrow Farm survives well and is likely to be in its original position. The
cross is in a prominent position, forms an ancient boundary marker and has an
unusual boutonne head.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Masson Phillips, E M, 'Transactions of the Devonshire Association' in The Ancient Stone Crosses of Devon, Part 2, , Vol. 70, (1938), 317
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX99NW-051, (1983)
MPP fieldwork by H. Gerrard, (1994)

Source: Historic England

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