Wayside cross 2m south of St Uny's Church, Lelant


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
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Date first listed:
Date of most recent amendment:


Ordnance survey map of Wayside cross 2m south of St Uny's Church, Lelant
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Cornwall (Unitary Authority)
St. Ives
National Grid Reference:
SW 54810 37724

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 2m south of St Uny Church has survived reasonably well, despite the loss of its shaft, as a good example of a `wheel' headed cross. Its decoration with a figure of Christ on one face and a cross on the other is rare. Its removal from Trevethoe in the 19th century, its re-erection on the top of a hill, its later return to Trevethoe and re-erection in St Uny's churchyard earlier this century, illustrates well the changing attitudes to religion and the impact of crosses on the local landscape since the medieval period.


The monument includes a medieval wayside cross in St Uny's churchyard situated to the south of the church. The cross survives as a round, granite `wheel' head mounted on a modern granite shaft. The overall height of the monument is 1.07m. The principal faces are orientated north-south. Both principal faces are decorated, and have a narrow bead around their outer edges. The south face bears a relief figure of Christ with outstretched arms and the head inclined to one side; the body terminates at the lower edge of the cross-head, although originally the figure would have extended onto the shaft. The north face bears a relief equal limbed cross with expanded ends to the limbs. A 0.12m long slot, 0.04m wide and 0.03m deep has been cut in the centre of the cross motif, and the letters `H H' have been incised on this face. The cross-head is cemented on to the modern shaft. This shaft measures 0.56m high by 0.27m wide and is 0.23m thick. The wayside cross was first mentioned by the antiquarian Blight in 1858 as being removed from Trevethoe, 1.5km south west of St Uny's Church. It was set up at the top of a hill, possibly Trencrom Hill, 3.25km south west of St Uny's Church. Later the cross-head was knocked off its shaft and rolled down hill. The head was set up on a wall by a cottage at Rosejarne, but around 1916 was returned to Trevethoe House. It remained there until 1955 when it was re-erected in St Uny's churchyard. The gravestone to the south west of the cross, the slate memorial slabs to the east and their associated burial urns and the wide drain or gutter to the north are not included in the scheduling.

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


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Consulted July 1996, Cornwall SMR entry for PRN No.31232,
Title: 1:25000 Ordnance Survey Map; SW63; Pathfinder Series 1365 Source Date: 1989 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:


This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

End of official listing

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