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Boundary cross at entrance to Quay Lane

A Scheduled Monument in Hanley Castle, Worcestershire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.0759 / 52°4'33"N

Longitude: -2.2328 / 2°13'57"W

OS Eastings: 384142.495361

OS Northings: 241971.291383

OS Grid: SO841419

Mapcode National: GBR 1HH.SCV

Mapcode Global: VH93D.72ZY

Entry Name: Boundary cross at entrance to Quay Lane

Scheduled Date: 17 February 1947

Last Amended: 27 August 1996

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015421

English Heritage Legacy ID: 27538

County: Worcestershire

Civil Parish: Hanley Castle

Traditional County: Worcestershire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Worcestershire

Church of England Parish: Hanley Castle with Hanley Swan

Church of England Diocese: Worcester

Details

The monument includes the remains of a standing stone cross, situated on the
verge on the east side of the Upton to Worcester road, at the entrance to Quay
Lane. The cross takes the form of a medieval socket stone with a restored
shaft and head.
The socket stone is of shelly limestone and is octagonal in plan, measuring
0.7m in diameter and 0.2m high. The tapering shaft is octagonal in section,
and rises c.2.5m to a decorated top with a small niche in each face. The
moulded neck of the shaft supports a separate head, c.0.7m high, which takes
the form of a decorated cross under a gable. The modern cross head replaced
the original ornamented stone cap after the latter was destroyed in an
accident in 1934. The cross is believed to be one of the four mentioned as
standing between Upton and the Rhydd c.1847, and was probably a boundary
marker. One of the others, which stands to the west of the road some 1.5km to
the north, is mentioned as the starting point of the perambulation of the
Malvern Chase boundaries during Elizabeth I's reign. It is the subject of a
separate scheduling (SM27549).

MAP EXTRACT
The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 1 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

A standing cross is a free standing upright structure, usually of stone,
mostly erected during the medieval period (mid 10th to mid 16th centuries AD).
Standing crosses served a variety of functions. In churchyards they served as
stations for outdoor processions, particularly in the observance of Palm
Sunday. Elsewhere, standing crosses were used within settlements as places for
preaching, public proclamation and penance, as well as defining rights of
sanctuary. Standing crosses were also employed to mark boundaries between
parishes, property, or settlements. A few crosses were erected to commemorate
battles. Some crosses were linked to particular saints, whose support and
protection their presence would have helped to invoke. Crosses in market
places may have helped to validate transactions. 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.
Standing crosses were distributed throughout England and are thought to have
numbered in excess of 12,000. However, their survival 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. Less than 2,000 medieval
standing crosses, with or without cross-heads, are now thought to exist. The
oldest and most basic form of standing cross is the monolith, a stone shaft
often set directly in the ground without a base. The most common form is the
stepped cross, in which the shaft is set in a socket stone and raised upon a
flight of steps; this type of cross remained current from the 11th to 12th
centuries until after the Reformation. Where the cross-head survives it may
take a variety of forms, from a lantern-like structure to a crucifix; the more
elaborate examples date from the 15th century. Much less common than stepped
crosses are spire-shaped crosses, often composed of three or four receding
stages with elaborate architectural decoration and/or sculptured figures; the
most famous of these include the Eleanor crosses, erected by Edward I at the
stopping places of the funeral cortege of his wife, who died in 1290. Also
uncommon are the preaching crosses which were built in public places from the
13th century, typically in the cemeteries of religious communities and
cathedrals, market places and wide thoroughfares; they include a stepped base,
buttresses supporting a vaulted canopy, in turn carrying either a shaft and
head or a pinnacled spire. Standing crosses contribute significantly to our
understanding of medieval customs, both secular and religious, and to our
knowledge of medieval parishes and settlement patterns. All crosses which
survive as standing monuments, especially those which stand in or near their
original location, are considered worthy of protection.


The cross at Hanley Castle is a good example of a medieval standing cross with
an octagonal socket stone and restored head. It is believed to stand in its
original position, and limited development in the area immediately surrounding
the cross suggests that archaeological deposits relating to the monument's
construction and use in this location are likely to survive intact. As one of
four medieval boundary markers, interest in the monument is further enhanced
by documentary references to the group. The cross is clearly visible to
pedestrians and motorists alike.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Other
FMW, HW271 - AM7,
spec. 25 inch, Gray, E F, (1950)

Source: Historic England

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