Branscombe’s Cheese

Although it has been placed elsewhere, Branscombe’s Cheese is believed to be these small slabs lying adjacent to Branscombe’s Loaf, a small tor atop Corn Ridge. This photo doesn’t show the relationship but instead a tiny xenolith, where country rock was incorporated into the granite.

The Loaf and Cheese are the site of a Dartmoor legend. Lady Sylvia Sayer, in ‘The Outline of Dartmoor’s Story’, writes: “Bishop Bronescombe often travelled to the Moor himself… tired and hungry he became, and how a stranger approached him with an offer of bread and cheese, if, in return, the Bishop would get off his horse, take his cap and call him “Master”; how the famished bishop almost did, but the chaplain spied the stranger’s cloven hoof just in time – at which the Bishop cried out to God and made the sign of the cross, whereat the stranger vanished, leaving the bread and cheese turned to stone: it still can be seen on Corn Ridge… and is still called Branscombe’s Loaf and Cheese!

Further Reading: Tors of Dartmoor, a website run by Max Piper, Paul Buck and Tim Jenkinson.