Ancient Monuments

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Wayside cross-base 300m north west of the Church of St Newlina

A Scheduled Monument in St. Newlyn East, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.3688 / 50°22'7"N

Longitude: -5.0572 / 5°3'25"W

OS Eastings: 182686.819

OS Northings: 56566.016

OS Grid: SW826565

Mapcode National: GBR ZF.PSWL

Mapcode Global: FRA 0892.7LW

Entry Name: Wayside cross-base 300m north west of the Church of St Newlina

Scheduled Date: 29 January 1998

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1018210

English Heritage Legacy ID: 30437

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: St. Newlyn East

Built-Up Area: St Newlyn East

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: St Newlyn

Church of England Diocese: Truro


The monument includes a medieval wayside cross-base situated beside the road
on a route from St Newlyn East to Tregair.
The wayside cross-base is visible as a rectangular granite slab measuring
0.6m north-south by 0.75m east-west, and 0.19m thick. The east side of the
cross-base is rounded in shape. The cross-base is groundfast set into a
granite walled niche in the base of the hedge. The central rectangular socket
measures 0.25m east-west by 0.18m north-south and is 0.1m deep.
The road which the cross stands beside leads northwards towards the lowest
bridged crossing point of the River Gannel at Trevemper Bridge, linking
St Newlyn East with one of the main routes through Cornwall. There is a
footpath just south of the cross-base to the church at St Newlyn East, so this
cross acted as a waymarker on a local level marking the route to the parish
church. The cross-base is Listed Grade II.
The metalled surface of the road passing to the west of the cross-base where
it falls within its protective margin is excluded from the scheduling,
although the ground beneath 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.

The presence of this medieval wayside cross-base at its original location
demonstrates well the major roles of wayside crosses, the development of the
road network and the longevity of many routes still in use.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Langdon, A, Stone Crosses in Mid Cornwall, (1994)
Title: 1:25000 Ordnance Survey Map; SW 85/95; Pathfinder 1353
Source Date: 1983

Source: Historic England

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