Bedford Marker Posts

There was great concern in the Merrivale area about stonecutters rapidly destroying tors. Swelltor and Foggintor are unrecognisable as tors today, whilst Sampford Tor and Ingra Tor also have quarries in them, and another smaller one below Pew Tor. The granite here is of such great quality that it was under real threat from expanding industry. The Duke of Bedford had 28 markers surround Roos Tor so that greedy stonecutters did not touch the tor on his land, and are thereby known as 'Bedford Markers'. 14 of these are the standing posts you can see from the tor, but there are also 14 inscribed markers adjacent to the stones that loosely resemble hot cross buns. The posts were erected in 1896 I believe and the inscriptions earlier in 1847, coinciding with Pew Tor which also had a series of markers inscribed in 1847 and 1896 respectively, but no posts. It is important to note that Sabine Baring-Gould tells us that the quarrymen had destroyed one of two logan stones at Roos Tor, suggesting that the tor had already suffered a little before an indefinite ban on taking moorstone was established. Baring-Gould sketched the two logans in 1852 which is 5 years after the ban was implemented, so one wonders if there were any skirmishes and illegal activities taking place at that time. Indeed, locals and stonecutters had several unfriendly encounters at Pew Tor with locals claiming that moorstone (loose granite) was being taken exponentially and ordered for further action to take place.

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