HeritageGateway - Home
Site Map
Text size: A A A
You are here: Home > > > > Devon & Dartmoor HER Result
Devon & Dartmoor HERPrintable version | About Devon & Dartmoor HER | Visit Devon & Dartmoor HER online...

See important guidance on the use of this record.

If you have any comments or new information about this record, please email us.

HER Number:MDV4799
Name:Stone Cross adjoining Fitz (or Fice's) Well, Okehampton Hamlets


Stone Cross adjoining Fitz's or Fice's Well may have been brought from the Medieval chapel of St Michael at Halstock


Grid Reference:SX 591 937
Map Sheet:SX59SE
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishOkehampton Hamlets
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishOKEHAMPTON

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: SX59SE3
  • National Record of the Historic Environment: 440849
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX59SE/1
  • Old SAM County Ref: 23

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • CROSS (Medieval - 1066 AD (Between) to 1539 AD (Between))

Full description

Ordnance Survey, 1880-1899, First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map (Cartographic). SDV336179.

'Stone Cross' shown on 19th century map to the south-west of 'Fice's Well'.

Ordnance Survey, 1904 - 1906, Second Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map (Cartographic). SDV325644.

'Stone Cross' shown on 19th century map to the south-west of 'Fice's Well'.

Ancient Monuments, 1922, Cross at Fitz's Well, June 1922 (Schedule Document). SDV262288.

Stone cross adjoining Fitz (or Fice's) Well. The cross is situated on the moor about three quarters of a mile south of Okehampton. After lying prostrate for many years it was re-erected by the owners on a raised mound. The cross is 9.14 metres high from ground level cut out of a block of granite. The arms are short and the left one is slightly broken.
On the front is an incised cross. There is no carving at the back. It is of great age and is reported that it was removed from Halstock Chapel when dissolved at the reformation.

Masson Phillips, E. N., 1937, The Ancient Stone Crosses of Devon: Part I, 334 (Article in Serial). SDV240502.

A cross at Fitz's Well comprises head, arms and upper portions of the shaft of rough rectangular section. On the face between the arms there is an incised cross. Type A.

Linehan, C. D., 1966, Deserted Sites and Rabbit-Warrens on Dartmoor, Devon, 127 (Article in Serial). SDV307246.

Some authorities mention a legend that the stone cross standing beside Fitzwell was brought from Halstock Chapel which lay about one mile to the east.

Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1974, SX59SE3 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV262297.

(15/10/1974) The cross is 0.8 metres high, 0.5 metres wide. Stands on rough stone platform.
May derive its name from John Fitz, who acquired Meldon in 1585 (Ordnance Survey citing Young, E. H. /Transactions of the Devonshire Association/ (1932) 61).

Griffiths, D., 1982, Cross at Fitz's Well, 25/3/1982 (Personal Comment). SDV262291.

Cross matches previously recorded descriptions. Only the top 0.8 metres survives, this embedded in concrete. Maximum width is 0.5 metres.

Department of Environment, 1987, Okehampton Hamlets, 65 (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV233134.

The cross is likely originally to have been taller but is now a short Greek cross of roughly hewn granite with an inscribed greek cross on its front face. Crossing quotes an old tradition that the cross was brought to the well from the medieval Chapel of St. Michael at the nearby Halstock which seems to have disappeared as early as the 15th or 16th century.

Wessex Archaeology, 2001, Okehampton Camp Devon. Archaeological Desk Based Assessment and Earthwork Survey, 11-12, Plate 3, Appendix 1 (Report - Survey). SDV360511.

Small granite cross possibly removed from ther chapel of St Michael at Halstock after it disappeared in the 15th or 16th century. It may have acquired the name od Fitz's (or Fice's) Cross after John Fitz who acquired Meldon further west in 1585.

Probert, S. A. J. + Newman, P., 2003-2004, Measured survey North Dartmoor Military Range Okehampton Range: Monument Baseline Condition Survey (Report - Survey). SDV350801.

This feature remains as described 1937 and 1974.

Ordnance Survey, 2016, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV359352.

'Cross (remains of)' depicted on the modern mapping.

Historic England, 2016, National Heritage List for England, Accessed 05/07/2016 (National Heritage List for England). SDV359353.

The wayside cross at Fice’s Well is of ancient date. Despite not being in its original position, its present location beside the holy well attests to the historic importance and affection in which the cross was held during turbulent times. The restoration of the cross, although denuding it of some of its original height has been done well, whilst also serving as a protection from damage by passing traffic and from grazing animals using it as a rubbing post.
Taken together, both affirm the changing values placed on elements steeped in Christian idolatry during times of religious change, uprising and uncertainty.
The monument includes a stone built holy well with an adjacent stone cross, situated on the summit of a north facing ridge forming part of East Hill, overlooking the valley of the West Okement River.
The cross is 0.8m high and 0.5m wide at the arms. It has an incised cross on one face and is set into a rough stone platform. It was reputedly brought to its current site from St. Michael’s Chapel in Halstock when the latter was destroyed during the Reformation. The well is used as a water supply to a nearby house.
The well and cross are listed Grade II.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV233134List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department of Environment. 1987. Okehampton Hamlets. Historic Houses Register. 65.
SDV240502Article in Serial: Masson Phillips, E. N.. 1937. The Ancient Stone Crosses of Devon: Part I. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 69. A5 Hardback. 334.
SDV262288Schedule Document: Ancient Monuments. 1922. Cross at Fitz's Well. The Schedule of Monuments. Unknown. June 1922.
SDV262291Personal Comment: Griffiths, D.. 1982. Cross at Fitz's Well. Not Applicable. 25/3/1982.
SDV262297Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1974. SX59SE3. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV307246Article in Serial: Linehan, C. D.. 1966. Deserted Sites and Rabbit-Warrens on Dartmoor, Devon. Medieval Archaeology. 10. Digital. 127.
SDV325644Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1904 - 1906. Second Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Second Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital). [Mapped feature: #115057 ]
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV350801Report - Survey: Probert, S. A. J. + Newman, P.. 2003-2004. Measured survey North Dartmoor Military Range Okehampton Range: Monument Baseline Condition Survey. Royal Commission for the Historical Monuments of England Archaeological Survey. 28-2004. Unknown.
SDV359352Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2016. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital.
SDV359353National Heritage List for England: Historic England. 2016. National Heritage List for England. Historic Houses Register. Digital. Accessed 05/07/2016.
SDV360511Report - Survey: Wessex Archaeology. 2001. Okehampton Camp Devon. Archaeological Desk Based Assessment and Earthwork Survey. Wessex Archaeology Report. 50171. A4 Comb Bound. 11-12, Plate 3, Appendix 1.

Associated Monuments

MDV6933Related to: Chapel of St. Michael of Halstock (Building)
MDV4800Related to: Fice's or Fitz's Holy Well, Okehampton Hamlets (Monument)
MDV20315Related to: Medieval Field System, Okehampton Park (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV3474 - Earthwork survey of Okehampton Castle and Park
  • EDV8007 - Okehampton Camp Devon: Archaeological Desk-based Assessment and Earthwork Survey (Ref: 50171.01)

Date Last Edited:Nov 25 2021 4:06PM