Guide post at Place Cross


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1020069

Date first listed: 19-Nov-1965

Date of most recent amendment: 09-Apr-2001


Ordnance survey map of Guide post at Place Cross
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Devon

District: West Devon (District Authority)

Parish: Okehampton Hamlets

National Grid Reference: SX 56445 94538


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

Reasons for Designation

Guide posts are upright markers erected along routeways to indicate, at their most basic, the course of a route, and sometimes further useful information such as destinations and distances. The idea can be traced back to Roman milestones erected by the Roman army in the first centuries AD. During the medieval period, responsibility for way-marking largely fell to the Church, whose marks frequently took the form of crosses, conveniently asserting the Christian faith at the same time as marking the route. This system collapsed with the Reformation, though substantial numbers of crosses still survive in some areas despite deliberate destruction of many route marking crosses. The Turnpike Acts, which enabled tolls to be levied on road users during the 18th century, revolutionised highway maintenance and made provision for guide posts and milestones. A substantial number of turnpike stone guide posts still survive, and as with the contemporary milestones, they are often of a distinctive style peculiar to one Turnpike Trust or to part of a Trust's length of road. Between 1888 and 1930, highways maintenance, including signposting, passed to County and District Councils, with national government taking responsibility for trunk roads in 1936. The locations, style and level of standardisation of guide posts provide very tangible indicators of post- medieval development of the road system; those erected during the 17th and 18th centuries formed an essential stimulus to the growth of the nation's internal trade which provided the setting for the Industrial Revolution.

The guide post at Place Cross survives comparatively well, with clearly defined inscribed writing, and a date of 1704 which neatly sets its place at a time when the road systems were becoming more formalised within England.


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


This monument includes a guide post situated on the eastern side of a busy road junction at the fork between two roads, the Narratons Road and the Holsworthy Road at the junction known as Place Cross. The monument survives as an upright granite stone, leaning at a rather sharp angle, which measures 0.25m wide by 0.2m deep at the base and tapers slightly upwards to a height of 0.7m. The stone is inscribed on two faces: HATH/ERLY/1704/S M/GL OKE/AMP/TON/1704.

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: 34278

Legacy System: RSM


Devon County Sites and Monuments Register, SX59SE8, (1997)

End of official listing