Ancient Monuments

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Medieval boundary stone, 900m south-east of Callaly Crag

A Scheduled Monument in Whittingham, Northumberland

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Latitude: 55.3723 / 55°22'20"N

Longitude: -1.8926 / 1°53'33"W

OS Eastings: 406903.864188

OS Northings: 608704.665874

OS Grid: NU069087

Mapcode National: GBR H67B.10

Mapcode Global: WHB0J.W7YC

Entry Name: Medieval boundary stone, 900m south-east of Callaly Crag

Scheduled Date: 4 February 1994

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1012120

English Heritage Legacy ID: 20989

County: Northumberland

Civil Parish: Whittingham

Traditional County: Northumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northumberland

Church of England Parish: Whittingham and Edlingham with Bolton Chapel

Church of England Diocese: Newcastle


The monument includes a decorated boundary stone of medieval date situated on
the edge of Old Thrunton Woods; it is one of a group of four in the area. The
stone, composed of local grey/brown limestone, is 0.2m thick and measures
1.25m high by 0.35m across. At the top of the south face there is a carving of
an incised straight armed cross. The form of the cross indicates that it dates
from the mid 11th to 13th centuries AD. This stone, along with three others,
are thought to mark the limits of an area of land at Thrunton which was
donated to Brinkburn Priory in the mid 13th century. On such an area of
featureless, but well used, moorland some form of artificial boundary marker
may have been required.

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Boundary stones have a long history of use in the definition of the extent of
land holdings, especially in places where the boundary was most contentious or
less well defined by other features. The church was one of the earliest users
of single marker stones to delineate the extent of their holdings. The very
earliest examples, dating from the 6th and 7th centuries AD, were used to
define sanctified areas such as the extent of graveyards or the bounds of a
monastic site. Subsequently in the medieval period they were used to mark more
extensive ecclesiastical land holdings. They are important monuments which
often provide our only source of information about past territorial divisions
of the landscape. Boundary stones were once more common than they are today
and are frequently referred to in medieval and post medieval documents, but
most were simple and undecorated. Single, decorated boundary stones exist in
certain areas, but groups of well preserved decorated stones like those on
Callaly Moor, designed to be closely set along a boundary are rare. The group
of stones on Callaly Moor date from between AD 1050 and AD 1250 and are the
only known group in Northumberland, paralleled elsewhere by only three
examples in Yorkshire, Humberside and Lincolnshire, marking ecclesiastical

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Nieke, M R, Callally Moor Field Survey, (1987), 1
Stocker, D, (1992)

Source: Historic England

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