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Widecombe-in-the-Moor Widecombe History Group Two Crosses Project
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The Widecombe & District Local History Group are currently looking into the history of Widecombe Town Manor. This was based around North Hall Manor House, the site of which, is approximately one hundred yards due North of Widecombe Church on private land owned by Mr & Mrs Michael Skinner. They, and the present ‘Lords of the Manor’ Mr & Mrs Patrick Coaker, are supporting and assisting the group in their research.
At the Western corner of the Manor is a standing stone which marks the manor boundary with two other Manors, Blackslade & Dunstone, and Jordan. This point has always been known as “Two Crosses”. History relates that the village lengthman and council workmen annually recut ‘Two Crosses’ in the turf at that point, hence it’s name. The reason for the crosses has been lost in time, but years ago anywhere a fatal accident occurred a cross was cut to mark the place and record the incident. Could this be the site of a double fatality?
Recently there has been a tendency to call this spot ‘Wind Tor Carpark’ or ‘Dunstone Carpark’ or even Southcombe Carpark, and local people resent this present day attitude of changing the names of places. With this in mind and with the co-operation of Mr & Mrs Coaker and The Dartmoor National Park Authority and the generosity of the group’s Chairman Mr Roger Whale this has been rectified.
Mr Whale donated the stone, Mr Andy Cribbett, stonemason of The Dartmoor National Park Authority did the engraving, and with the permission of The Lords of the Manor the stone has now been placed at “Two Crosses”, suitably engraved with Two X’s and the words Two Crosses, as a permanent marker.
Widecombe Town Manor & Boundary:
This is progressing alongside the North Hall project. Mary Pascoe brought to the group’s notice a book by Dave Brewer, ‘A Field Guide to the Boundary Markers on and around Dartmoor’ which has the following quote:
‘However Robert Dymond in the nineteenth century had intended to erect a stone cross at the “Two Crosses in Turfe” on the northernmost point of his bounds of Dunstone. Having regard to the name of the site, it was proposed that the cross should have two pairs of arms, or alternatively, that two crosses should be erected, but unfortunately, neither came to pass’.
It is hoped that our action will at last rectify this matter and the above quote corroborates the ‘Two Crosses’ story of there being two crosses cut in the turf at that spot.
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