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Ships Figurehead About 8 Metres West of the Lych Gate of the Church of St Morwenna

A Grade II Listed Building in Morwenstow, Cornwall

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Latitude: 50.9089 / 50°54'32"N

Longitude: -4.5539 / 4°33'14"W

OS Eastings: 220544

OS Northings: 115267

OS Grid: SS205152

Mapcode National: GBR K2.R05Q

Mapcode Global: FRA 16BP.ZMS

Entry Name: Ships Figurehead About 8 Metres West of the Lych Gate of the Church of St Morwenna

Listing Date: 9 September 1985

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1141779

English Heritage Legacy ID: 64912

Location: Morwenstow, Cornwall, EX23

County: Cornwall

Civil Parish: Morwenstow

Traditional County: Cornwall

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cornwall

Church of England Parish: Morwenstow

Church of England Diocese: Truro

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Listing Text


1/109 Ships figurehead about 8 metres
- west of the lych gate of the
Church of St Morwenna
- II

Ships figurehead. Early C19. Carved wood painted single colour. Figure of
Caledonia, holding drawn sword and shield, fixed on original timber. Ship's
figurehead set up to commemorate the captain and crew of the 'Caledonia' of
Arbroath, wrecked at Morwenstow in 1842 with one survivor. The figure was repaired
in 1968 after it had been damaged during theft. It is illustrated in the Hawker
memorial window (q.v.) in the church. The Reverend R S Hawker's practice of
burying drowned sailors in the churchyard was a notable break with local tradition.
At one time 3 ships keels and a cross formed from oars were placed in the
churchyard to commemorate dead sailors. Hawker published a dramatic description of
the aftermath of the wreck of the 'Caledonia' with a poem : "We smoothed the green
turf on their breast,/'Mid baffled ocean's angry roan/And there - the relique of
the storm-/We fixed fair Scotland's figured form"/, Footprints of Former Men in Far
Cornwall (1870). R S Hawker, poet and antiquary, was vicar of Morwenstow from

Listing NGR: SS2054615266

This text is from the original listing, and may not necessarily reflect the current setting of the building.

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