Appledore history set in stone
A TRIUMPHANT moment in Torridgeside history is being carved in stone in Appledore. The end of a nine-year project is in sight with the arrival of a three-ton block of Lundy granite on the Western Hill green in Hillcliff Terrace, looking out over the Torri
A TRIUMPHANT moment in Torridgeside history is being carved in stone in Appledore.
The end of a nine-year project is in sight with the arrival of a three-ton block of Lundy granite on the Western Hill green in Hillcliff Terrace, looking out over the Torridge estuary.
It will become the village's Hubba Stone, commemorating the ancient battle with invading Hubba the Dane and his forces in 878AD and, hopefully, become a local heritage focal point.
The stone has been the nine-year dream of local historian and Appledore Pirates charity group member Terry Bailey, who conducts heritage trails in the village.
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History had it that Hubba and his Viking invaders were routed in battle and that Hubba himself had been buried on the beach under a large stone, said Terry.
It was while visiting Lundy that he first came on the idea of creating a Hubba Stone from island granite as it was likely that this could have provided the original Hubba Stone. There was little else in the way of large pieces of stone to be found in the area, he said.
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So the dream was born, originally as a Millennium project. But the logistics and planning requirements made it a longer exercise. With the help of the REME military establishment at Instow the stone was transported to Appledore by landing craft in 2005.
But last week it was finally able to be put in place, where Terry is hoping it will be the centrepiece of an amenity area that could also include "Viking ship" seating. He is also hoping to involve Appledore School - 100 years old this year - in creating a time capsule to be buried by the stone.
There are plans to have the stone engraved in a style similar to the Viking Stone in Lydford Gorge, said Terry.
It is hoped it will raise awareness of local history and also of Lundy granite - formerly used in the building of Bideford's historic bridge, local churches, and in the construction of the Thames embankment.
Money for the stone had been raised by the local charity group the West Quay Fundraisers, he said.