HeritageGateway - Home

Login  |  Register
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:MDV6619
Name:Bennett's Cross on the western boundary of Headland Warren

Summary

Bennetts Cross is one of the most unusually distinctive of surviving wayside crosses on moorland Dartmoor, and is easily visible from the road. Its irregular shape gives it an ancient appearance, and its use as a boundmark for both parish and rabbit warren gives it added status. The stone may be a Christianised prehistoric standing stone. This is boundary stone (3) on the western side of Headland Warren

Location

Grid Reference:SX 680 816
Map Sheet:SX68SE
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishChagford
Civil ParishNorth Bovey
DistrictTeignbridge
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishCHAGFORD

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: SX 68 SE 17
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX68SE/52
  • Old SAM County Ref: 405
  • Old SAM Ref: 24822
  • Pastscape: 443800

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • WAYSIDE CROSS (VIII to Late Medieval - 701 AD? to 1539 AD (Between))

Full description

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

'Bennett's Cross (Stone Cross)' shown on 19th century map.


Masson Phillips, E. N., 1937, The Ancient Stone Crosses of Devon: Part I, 311, plate 32, figure 3 (Article in Serial). SDV240502.

Bennet's Cross on the southern side of the road from Moretonhampstead to Princetown, about 0.75 mile north-east of the Warren House Inn. Type A; a curiously misshapen cross of rough rectangular section. The shaft narrows towards the head, and the head and arms taper slightly. The cross is inclined to one side. On the face towards the road it bears the incised letters "WB" standing for warren bounds, the cross being a boundary mark of Headland Warren.


Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1952, SX68SE17 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV256924.

This cross which is in good condition stands 6 feet in height and the arms of the cross are acroximately 2 feet across. The letters 'WB' are inscribed on the northern face.


Brown, T., 1961, Tales of a Dartmoor Village, 209 (Article in Serial). SDV238060.

A fine example of a wayside cross. Mentioned as a boundary marker in 1702, but it is probably much older. The name could derive from "benet", meaning exorcist or cleric in minor orders, or it may be a diminutive of St. Benedict.


Greeves, T. A. P., 1982, Bennett's Cross, 24/8/1982, sketch included (worksheets 27-8) (Worksheet). SDV256926.

The cross has recently suffered damage, the north arm being reduced to a truncated stump.
On the east face of the cross, a slab measuring 40 by 20 centimetres has broken away. A fine split 48 centimetres long runs from the damaged area down the main shaft. On the west face, a slab measuring 32 centimetres by 13 centimetres has broken away taking with it part of the "W" incised on this face.
The top of the cross, and its south arm are undamaged as is the main shaft eblow the arms (except for the split mentioned above), i.e.: approximately 1.4 metres of the shaft is still intact.


Robinson, R., 1982, List of Field Monument Warden Visits 1982 (Un-published). SDV342809.

Visted 6/10/1982.


Robinson, R., 1983, List of Field Monument Warden Visits 1983 (Un-published). SDV345762.

Visted 11/10/1983.


Griffiths, D. M., 1986, Bennett's Cross repairs (Correspondence). SDV256928.

Cross was repaired by Dartmoor National Park in 1983.


Department of Environment, 1987, Chagford, 5 (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV350463.

Wayside cross and parish boundary marker. Probably 15th century. The cross stands approximately 1.3 metres high and is made from a single piece of granite. It is crudely shaped with small stubby arms and a shaft that is far from straight. The initials WB are carved on the front at the intersection of the arms.


Ancient Monuments, 1993, Bennett's Cross (Schedule Document). SDV256921.

The arms of the cross are aligned due north-south. The cross has a maximum height above the ground surface of 1.85 metres. The shaft is curiously misshapen. The lowest 0.6 metre section is straight, but it then bends north about 50 millimetres, before straightening up to the arms.
The east side of the shaft bulges outwards in its middle portion. The shaft does not have defined or chamfered edges, but is roughly rectangular in section, having a maximum west-east thickness of 0.36 metres and a maximum north-south thickness of 0.46 metres.
The head of the cross extends 0.24 metres above the arms, and tapers towards the top, where it is only 0.2 metres wide compared with 0.29 metres wide where it joins the arms. The southern arm of the cross extends a maximum of 0.1 metres from the shaft, and has a depth of 0.23 metres. The northern arm extends 0.14 metres, and has a depth of 0.27 metres. The cross was damaged in 1982, probably by lightning, and was repaired in 1983. The eastern face of the cross is damaged between the arms and the western face has suffered damage on the northern arm. The latter destroyed the first downstroke of the letter 'W' which is part of an inscription 'WB' in letters 0.12 metres high with incisions approximately 15 millimetres wide by 7 millimetres deep.
The cross was a boundmark for a rabbit warren in the 18th and 19th century. The cross is also a boundmark between the parishes of Chagford and North Bovey. The northern edge of the northern arm has a crack running vertically down it. The crack is open for about 10 millimetres. There is a vertical hairline crack about 170 millimetres long, also on the northern edge of the northern arm, and about 40 millimetres in from the western face of the arm. Both these cracks are partially filled. The cross appears to be set in an embanked hollow about 4 metres in diameter and defined by scarps about 0.15 metres high. A possible bank on the western side is about 1.5 metres wide.
The style of this cross, which is unlike any other recorded Dartmoor cross, combined with its remote yet conspicuous location, make it a strong candidate for being a Christianised prehistoric standing stone.
Impressively sited and well-preserved monolithic wayside cross of coarse granite with large feldspar crystals.


Newman, P., 2001, Headland Warren Part 3: The Warren, 3-5, Figure 2 (Report - Survey). SDV359913.

Boundary Stone (3) on the western side of Headland Warren is the re-used Bennett's Cross which was a medieval waymarker.


Newman, P., 2002, Headland Warren and the Birch Tor and Vitifer Mines (Report - Survey). SDV363213.

(Visited 10/10/2000) SX 68008162. This feature is as described in 1937 (Masson Phillips) and measures 2.0 metres high 0.4 metres by 0.3 metres at base with a width over the arms of 0.6 metres. The inscription is inscribed in the south-west face. A small erosion hollow surrounds this feature.


Jenkinson, T., 2007, Miscellaneous Milestones and Boundary Markers of Dartmoor Roads, 28/05/2007 (Report - Survey). SDV361800.

Bennett’s Cross about 0.5 miles north-east of the Warren House Inn 5 metres or so back from the road (B3212) on south side near car park. (SX68022 81643). Legend ‘WB’, for ‘Warren Bounds’. Inscribed with faint letters that have eroded considerably; ‘B’ only just visible. Thought to date to around c. 1870.


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

'Bennett's Cross' is depicted on the modern mapping.


Historic England, 2016, National Heritage List for England, Accessed 11/07/2016 (National Heritage List for England). SDV359353.

The monument includes an impressively sited and well-preserved monolithic wayside cross of coarse granite with large feldspar crystals, located about 16m south of the B3212 road between Postbridge and Moretonhampstead. The arms of the cross are aligned due north-south. The cross has a maximum height above the ground surface of 1.85m. The shaft is curiously misshapen. The lowest 0.6m is straight, but it then bends northwards about 50mm, before straightening up to the arms. The east side of the shaft bulges outwards in its middle portion. The shaft does not have defined or chamfered edges, but is roughly rectangular in section , having a maximum west-east thickness of 0.36m and a maximum north-south thickness of 0.46m. The head of the cross extends 0.24m above the arms, and tapers towards the top, where it is only 0.2m wide compared with 0.29m wide where it joins the arms. The southern arm of the cross extends a maximum of 0.1m from the shaft, and has a depth of 0.23m. The northern arm extends 0.14m, and has a depth of 0.27m. The cross was damaged in 1982, probably by lightning, and was repaired in 1983. The east face of the cross is damaged between the arms, and the west face has suffered damage on the northern arm. The latter destroyed the first downstroke of the letter `W' which is part of an inscription `WB' in letters 0.12m high with incisions approximately 15mm wide by 7mm deep. These letters probably stand for Warren Bound, as the cross was a boundmark for a rabbit warren in the 18th and 19th century. The cross is also a boundmark between the parishes of Chagford and North Bovey. The northern edge of the north arm has a crack running vertically down it. The crack is open for about 10mm. There is a vertical hairline crack about 170mm long, also on the northern edge of the north arm, and about 40mm in from the west face of the arm. Both these cracks are partially filled. The cross appears to be set in an embanked hollow about 4m in diameter and defined by scarps about 0.15m high. A possible bank on the west side is about 1.5m wide. The style of this cross, which is unlike any other recorded Dartmoor cross, combined with its remote yet conspicuous location, make it a strong candidate for being a Christianised prehistoric standing stone.
Bennetts Cross is one of the most unusually distinctive of surviving wayside crosses on moorland Dartmoor, and is easily visible from the road. Its irregular shape gives it an ancient appearance, and its use as a boundmark for both parish and rabbit warren gives it added status. The stone may be prehistoric in origin.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV238060Article in Serial: Brown, T.. 1961. Tales of a Dartmoor Village. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 93. Unknown. 209.
SDV240502Article in Serial: Masson Phillips, E. N.. 1937. The Ancient Stone Crosses of Devon: Part I. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 69. A5 Hardback. 311, plate 32, figure 3.
SDV256921Schedule Document: Ancient Monuments. 1993. Bennett's Cross. The Schedule of Monuments. Unknown.
SDV256924Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1952. SX68SE17. Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card. Card Index.
SDV256926Worksheet: Greeves, T. A. P.. 1982. Bennett's Cross. Worksheet. Digital. 24/8/1982, sketch included (worksheets 27-8).
SDV256928Correspondence: Griffiths, D. M.. 1986. Bennett's Cross repairs. Letter. Unknown.
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV342809Un-published: Robinson, R.. 1982. List of Field Monument Warden Visits 1982. Lists of Field Monument Warden Visits. Unknown.
SDV345762Un-published: Robinson, R.. 1983. List of Field Monument Warden Visits 1983. Lists of Field Monument Warden Visits. Printout.
SDV350463List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department of Environment. 1987. Chagford. Historic Houses Register. A4 Bound. 5.
SDV359352Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2016. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #42910 ]
SDV359353National Heritage List for England: Historic England. 2016. National Heritage List for England. Historic Houses Register. Digital. Accessed 11/07/2016.
SDV359913Report - Survey: Newman, P.. 2001. Headland Warren Part 3: The Warren. English Heritage Survey Report. A1/20/2001. A4 Comb Bound. 3-5, Figure 2.
SDV361800Report - Survey: Jenkinson, T.. 2007. Miscellaneous Milestones and Boundary Markers of Dartmoor Roads. Milestone Society. Digital. 28/05/2007.
SDV363213Report - Survey: Newman, P.. 2002. Headland Warren and the Birch Tor and Vitifer Mines. English Heritage. A1/34/2002. A4 Comb Bound + Digital.

Associated Monuments

MDV44110Related to: Boundary Stone marking the boundary of Headland Warren, North Bovey (Monument)
MDV118777Related to: Boundary Stone marking the boundary of Headland Warren, North Bovey (Monument)
MDV118778Related to: Boundary Stone marking the boundary of Headland Warren, North Bovey (Monument)
MDV118779Related to: Boundary Stone marking the boundary of Headland Warren, North Bovey (Monument)
MDV118780Related to: Boundary Stone marking the boundary of Headland Warren, North Bovey (Monument)
MDV118813Related to: Boundary Stone marking the boundary of Headland Warren, North Bovey (Monument)
MDV41465Related to: Boundary Stone marking the boundary of Headland Warren, North Bovey (Monument)
MDV69803Related to: Boundary stone north of Bennett's Cross (Monument)
MDV6549Related to: Headland Warren, North Bovey (Monument)
MDV16974Related to: Tavistock to Moretonhampstead road (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV7139 - Headland Warren and the Birch Tor and Vitifer Mines Survey (Ref: A1/20/2001, A1/34/2002)
  • EDV7612 - Miscellaneous Milestone and Boundary Markers of Dartmoor Roads

Date Last Edited:Sep 17 2019 2:59PM