Ancient Monuments

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Village cage and St Peter's Cross

A Scheduled Monument in Lingfield, Surrey

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.1746 / 51°10'28"N

Longitude: -0.0188 / 0°1'7"W

OS Eastings: 538592.905153

OS Northings: 143570.503401

OS Grid: TQ385435

Mapcode National: GBR KLC.82R

Mapcode Global: VHGSL.MQFY

Entry Name: Village cage and St Peter's Cross

Scheduled Date: 22 July 1946

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1005942

English Heritage Legacy ID: SU 105

County: Surrey

Civil Parish: Lingfield

Built-Up Area: Lingfield

Traditional County: Surrey

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Surrey

Church of England Parish: Lingfield St Peter and St Paul

Church of England Diocese: Southwark

Summary

St Peter’s Cross and Village Cage.

Source: Historic England

Details

This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 24 November 2014. The record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

The monument includes St Peter’s Cross with adjoining village cage or lock-up situated at the junction of the roads leading to Lingfield village and Dormansland. The cross was erected by Sir Reginald Cobham in around 1437 to mark the boundary between Putlenden and Builleshurst Manors. Only the pedestal remains, which forms an obelisk about 6m high. The adjoining lock-up, a sandstone building with a Horsham slab roof, was added in 1773. It has a square-stepped tower to the south and a cell with planked door to the north. According to documentary sources, the former lock-up was last used in 1882.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

This monument is significant both as the site of a standing cross and as that of the village lock-up. Together these form an important focal point near the centre of Lingfield.

Standing crosses are free standing upright structures, usually of stone, mostly erected during the medieval period (mid 10th to mid 16th centuries AD). They served a variety of functions including places for preaching, public proclamation and penance, and, as is the case in Lingfield, to mark boundaries between parishes, property, or settlements. After the Reformation, some crosses continued in use as foci for municipal or borough ceremonies, for example as places for official proclamations and announcements; some were the scenes of games or recreational activity. The survival of crosses since the Reformation has been variable, being much affected by local conditions, attitudes and religious sentiment. In particular, many cross-heads were destroyed by iconoclasts during the 16th and 17th centuries, which is likely to have been the fate of the cross at Lingfield. Although only the pedestal remains it is part of a limited group of such monuments; less than 2,000 medieval standing crosses, with or without cross-heads, are now thought to exist.

The adjoining lock-up, or ‘Village Cage’ as it has traditionally been known, was a later addition to the site, which took advantage of what was already an important location near the centre of the village. Lock ups were temporary holding places for offenders being brought before the magistrate. In this case it was, like most, a purpose built, windowless single cell structure with a single ventilation grille in the door. The earliest recorded lock up dates from the 13th century, and most fell out of use when police stations with their own holding facilities were established. Less than 300 lock ups are currently recorded nationally and there are relatively few in Surrey.

Together with the remains of St Peter’s cross, the lock-up at Lingfield provides valuable testament to the history of the village. As a monument accessible to the public, the two structures form an important recreational and educational resource.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Books and journals
Malden, H E, The Victoria History of the County of Surrey: Volume IV, (1912), 302-3
Other
Surrey HER 1304. NMR TQ34SE4. PastScape 403652.

Source: Historic England

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