Wayside cross on Whitcross Hill, immediately north of Seaview Terrace


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1016461

Date first listed: 30-May-1930

Date of most recent amendment: 16-Nov-1998


Ordnance survey map of Wayside cross on Whitcross Hill, immediately north of Seaview Terrace
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Cornwall (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Carn Brea

National Grid Reference: SW 67454 39742


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 medieval wayside cross on Whitecross Hill survives reasonably well, despite the loss of the lower part of its shaft. It is a good example of a wheel headed cross. It remains close to its original location maintaining its function as a waymarker on its original route, demonstrating well the major role of such wayside crosses.


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


The monument includes a medieval wayside cross, situated on the top of a hedge on Whitecross Hill, to the south east of Camborne. The wayside cross, which is Listed Grade II, survives as the upper part of an upright granite shaft with a round `wheel' head, its principal faces orientated north east-south west. Both principal faces bear a `Latin' cross in relief, the lower limb extending down the shaft. The overall height of the monument is 0.6m. The head measures 0.45m wide by 0.22m thick. The top of the head has been fractured on both principal faces at some time in the past. This cross was found in 1930 built into the base of the hedge near its present location. Both the fact that the cross is on Whitecross Hill and that the adjacent field was named `Cross field' on the Tithe Apportionment Map indicated the possible existence of a cross here. It was re-erected on top of the hedge in 1947 by the Old Cornwall Society. Whitecross Hill forms part of a route from Camborne to Helston on the south coast of Cornwall, linking up with a major medieval and later route from Redruth to Helston. The post and wire fence to the south west of the cross, where it falls within the monument's protective margin, is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath is included.

MAP EXTRACT 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.


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

Legacy System number: 31840

Legacy System: RSM


Consulted July 1997, Cornwall SMR entry for PRN No. 35261,
Preston Jones, A, FMW report for CO 255,
Title: 1'' Ordnance Survey Map Truro and Lizard Head; Sheet 96 Source Date: 1813 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:
Title: 1:25000 Ordnance Survey Map; SW 33/43/part 53; Pathfinder 1364 Source Date: 1989 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

End of official listing