Ancient Monuments

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Two crosses immediately west of St Budock Church

A Scheduled Monument in Budock, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.1502 / 50°9'0"N

Longitude: -5.1004 / 5°6'1"W

OS Eastings: 178604.022277

OS Northings: 32390.924723

OS Grid: SW786323

Mapcode National: GBR ZC.HMDH

Mapcode Global: FRA 086M.GS4

Entry Name: Two crosses immediately west of St Budock Church

Scheduled Date: 7 September 2000

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1019164

English Heritage Legacy ID: 31866

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: Budock

Built-Up Area: Falmouth

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: Budock

Church of England Diocese: Truro


The monument includes two medieval crosses situated on either side of a
footpath to the west of St Budock Church on the south coast of west
Cornwall. Both crosses are Listed Grade II.
The cross on the north side of the footpath survives as an upright granite
shaft with a round `wheel' head, standing to 0.48m high. The head measures
0.46m in diameter and 0.10m thick and the principal faces are orientated north
west-south east. The south west face bears an incised equal limbed cross
set within an incised ring. Another incised line runs across the neck of the
cross. The north east face is decorated with five small, circular indentations
or shallow holes, forming a cross; one is centrally placed, and the others
mark the ends of the limbs. The shaft measures 0.38m wide and 0.14m thick.
The cross on the south side of the footpath also survives as an upright
granite shaft with a round `wheel' head, standing to 0.61m high. The head
measures 0.49m in diameter and 0.13m thick and the principal faces are
orientated north east-south west. Both principal faces bear an incised cross
set within an incised circle. The intersection of the cross and the ends of
the limbs are marked with small circular indentations or shallow holes.
Both of these crosses were located in their present position before 1896 when
they were recorded and illustrated by the local historian, Langdon. There is
no record of them having been moved.
The gravel surface of the footpath between the two crosses, the chest tomb to
the north west of the northern cross and the row of three grave stones to the
south west of the southern cross are excluded from the scheduling where they
fall within the monument's 2m protective margin, although the ground beneath
is included.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

A standing cross is a free standing upright structure, usually of stone,
mostly erected during the medieval period (mid 10th to mid 16th centuries AD).
Standing crosses served a variety of functions. In churchyards they served as
stations for outdoor processions, particularly in the observance of Palm
Sunday. Elsewhere, standing crosses were used within settlements as places for
preaching, public proclamation and penance, as well as defining rights of
sanctuary. Standing crosses were also employed to mark boundaries between
parishes, property, or settlements. A few crosses were erected to commemorate
battles. Some crosses were linked to particular saints, whose support and
protection their presence would have helped to invoke. Crosses in market
places may have helped to validate transactions. After the Reformation, some
crosses continued in use as foci for municipal or borough ceremonies, for
example as places for official proclamations and announcements; some were the
scenes of games or recreational activity.
Standing crosses were distributed throughout England and are thought to have
numbered in excess of 12,000. However, their survival since the Reformation
has been variable, being much affected by local conditions, attitudes and
religious sentiment. In particular, many cross-heads were destroyed by
iconoclasts during the 16th and 17th centuries. Less than 2,000 medieval
standing crosses, with or without cross-heads, are now thought to exist. The
oldest and most basic form of standing cross is the monolith, a stone shaft
often set directly in the ground without a base. The most common form is the
stepped cross, in which the shaft is set in a socket stone and raised upon a
flight of steps; this type of cross remained current from the 11th to 12th
centuries until after the Reformation. Where the cross-head survives it may
take a variety of forms, from a lantern-like structure to a crucifix; the more
elaborate examples date from the 15th century. Much less common than stepped
crosses are spire-shaped crosses, often composed of three or four receding
stages with elaborate architectural decoration and/or sculptured figures; the
most famous of these include the Eleanor crosses, erected by Edward I at the
stopping places of the funeral cortege of his wife, who died in 1290. Also
uncommon are the preaching crosses which were built in public places from the
13th century, typically in the cemeteries of religious communities and
cathedrals, market places and wide thoroughfares; they include a stepped base,
buttresses supporting a vaulted canopy, in turn carrying either a shaft and
head or a pinnacled spire. Standing crosses contribute significantly to our
understanding of medieval customs, both secular and religious, and to our
knowledge of medieval parishes and settlement patterns. All crosses which
survive as standing monuments, especially those which stand in or near their
original location, are considered worthy of protection.

The two crosses immediately west of St Budock Church survive well in what is
believed to be their original location. In form and decoration they are more
typical of wayside crosses than the more elaborate churchyard crosses, and
display rare incised cross motifs.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Langdon, A G, Old Cornish Crosses, (1896)
Langdon, A G, Old Cornish Crosses, (1896)
Langdon, A G, Stone Crosses in West Cornwall, (1999)
Title: 1:25000 Ordnance Survey Map; SW 83; Pathfinder Series 1366
Source Date: 1984

Source: Historic England

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