Wayside cross 70m south of St Uny's Church, Lelant


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1017630

Date first listed: 01-Dec-1960

Date of most recent amendment: 08-Dec-1997


Ordnance survey map of Wayside cross 70m south of St Uny's Church, Lelant
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Cornwall (Unitary Authority)

Parish: St. Ives

National Grid Reference: SW 54826 37652


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 70m south of St Uny's Church has survived reasonably well as a good example of a `wheel' headed cross, with a rare figure of Christ motif on one face. Its reuse as a gatepost at some time in the past and as building stone, and its subsequent rediscovery and re-erection in the cemetery early this century, demonstrates well the changing attitudes to religion and the impact of crosses on the local landscape since the medieval period.


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


The monument includes a medieval wayside cross situated in the cemetery to the south of St Uny's Church. The cross survives as an upright granite shaft with a round, `wheel' head, mounted in a rectangular granite base. The overall height of the monument is 1.8m. The principal faces are orientated north-south. The north principal face bears a relief figure of Christ with outstretched arms, the legs and feet extending onto the top of the shaft; a groove across the neck of the cross separates the feet from the rest of the figure. There is a narrow bead around the outer edge of the head on this face. The south principal face is plain, the upper third has been fractured, and there is a hole in the upper part of this face. There is a further hole on the east side of the head and both these holes are probably the result of an earlier reuse of the cross as a gatepost. The shaft measures 1.1m high by 0.32m wide and is 0.18m thick at the base widening to 0.23m at the top. The shaft is cemented into a modern granite base. This base measures 0.94m east-west by 0.82m north-south and is 0.24m high. This wayside cross was found by the historian Langdon in 1896 built into a hedge in the lane on the west side of the churchyard. It was re-erected in its present position in the cemetery in 1906 and is Listed Grade II*.

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: 30428

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Langdon, A G, Old Cornish Crosses, (1896)
Consulted July 1996, Cornwall SMR entry for PRN No.30165,
Title: 1:25000 Ordnance Survey Map; SW 33/43/part 53; Pathfinder 1364 Source Date: 1989 Author: Publisher: Surveyor:

End of official listing