Ancient Monuments

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Churchyard cross in St Michael's churchyard

A Scheduled Monument in Garway, Herefordshire,

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Latitude: 51.898 / 51°53'52"N

Longitude: -2.7933 / 2°47'35"W

OS Eastings: 345512.117

OS Northings: 222463.2765

OS Grid: SO455224

Mapcode National: GBR FG.QRR4

Mapcode Global: VH78Y.JKN9

Entry Name: Churchyard cross in St Michael's churchyard

Scheduled Date: 11 July 1997

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1016119

English Heritage Legacy ID: 29863

County: Herefordshire,

Civil Parish: Garway

Traditional County: Herefordshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Herefordshire

Church of England Parish: Garway

Church of England Diocese: Hereford


The monument includes a standing stone cross located approximately 7m to the
south of the south chapel of St Michael's Church. The cross, which is Listed
Grade II, is of stepped form, and is medieval and later in date. The monument
includes the base which incorporates a single step and a socket stone, and the
shaft and head which have been carved from a single block of stone.

The single step measures 1.45m square in plan at the base, and is reduced at
the top by a rounded bevel to 1.28m square. The step is 0.24m high. The socket
stone rests centrally on the step; it is 0.8m square at the base, and rises
through chamfered corners to an octagon on the surface. It is 0.4m high. The
modern shaft is mortised into the socket stone and bonded with mortar. The
remains of lead from the original shaft is also visible. The modern shaft and
head are formed from a single block of sandstone, similar to that used in the
construction of the church, and together extend to a height of 0.92m. The
shaft is rectangular at the base, measuring 0.41m by 0.17m. The short sides of
the shaft are reduced by a series of bevels. The shaft then rises through
chamfered corners to an octagonal section. The cross head takes the form of a
highly decorative closed ring crucifix, which faces east. The east face of the
cross depicts the Lamb and Flag. An inscription on the base of the cross shaft
states that the cross was restored in memory of the wife of the vicar of
Garway, who died in 1897. The full height of the monument is 1.56m.

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 churchyard cross in St Michael's churchyard is a good example of a
standing cross, with a square stepped base, and a square to octagonal socket
stone. Situated to the south of the church, it is believed to stand in or near
its original position. While parts of the cross have survived from medieval
times, its subsequent restoration has resulted in its continued function as a
public monument and amenity.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Tapper, A, St. Michael's Church, Garway, (1996)

Source: Historic England

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