Wayside cross at Halwill on a roadside 40m south east of the church

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1016218

Date first listed: 24-Oct-1997

Map

Ordnance survey map of Wayside cross at Halwill on a roadside 40m south east of the church
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Location

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Devon

District: Torridge (District Authority)

Parish: Halwill

National Grid Reference: SX 42747 99395

Summary

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

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 pilgrimages. 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 wayside cross at Halwill survives comparatively well in what is likely to be its original location.

History

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Details

The monument includes a wayside cross of medieval date situated beside a minor road from Halwill to Halwill Junction. The cross is set on top of a hedgebank near the church entrance and opposite the original manor house. The cross is roughly made from moorland granite and has short arms. There is an incised device on the side facing north east, which may represent a St Andrew's cross. The cross is rectangular in section and measures 0.36m wide at the base, 0.46m wide at the arms and 0.36m wide at the head. It is 0.23m thick and 1.35m high. The cross is Listed Grade II.

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

Legacy

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: 27335

Legacy System: RSM

Sources

Books and journals
Masson Phillips, E, 'Devonshire Association Transactions' in The Ancient Stone Crosses of Devon : Part 1, , Vol. 69, (1936-37), 319
Other
Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX49NW-011, (1988)
MPP fieldwork by H. Gerrard, (1994)

End of official listing