The iconic and cherished Red Post signpost marks the crossing of the A3072 and B3254 roads in the parish of Launcells, north Cornwall. It is the first directional way-marker encountered by those entering Cornwall from the direction of Holsworthy, Devon. Red Post is unique in Cornwall.
The geographical importance of the area where Red Post stands is shown by the adjacent Bronze Age burial barrows, which mark the ridge separating tributaries of the rivers Neet and Tamar. Marking territory has been of importance in this area for more than 2,500 years.
The area has been labelled on maps as ‘Red Post’ since at least 1817. Around that time, it became home to a brick and tile works and a wharf for the Bude Canal. Red Post has also lent its name and identity to the nearby Red Post Inn and Tourist Park, and the Red Post Service Station. The historic inn is said to have smuggling connections and the cross roads on which it sits, and for which Red Post gives directions, was used for public executions.
For visitors to Cornwall, Red Post is a welcome sign that they are nearing the coast and the spectacular sea views afforded from Hobbacott Down. Taking ‘selfies’ at Red Post has become commonplace. For locals, Red Post is a cherished aspect of their local identity and heritage.
In April 2021, all four directional fingerposts of Red Post were removed and are presumed stolen. Launcells Parish Council is seeking to raise funds through Crowdfunder to meet the costs of recasting and erecting new fingerposts. We sincerely hope that this iconic, historic and much-loved signpost can be restored to bring happiness once more to local people and their visitors.