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Market cross 10m west of Cross Farmhouse

A Scheduled Monument in Harringworth, Northamptonshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.566 / 52°33'57"N

Longitude: -0.6482 / 0°38'53"W

OS Eastings: 491725.724001

OS Northings: 297317.458801

OS Grid: SP917973

Mapcode National: GBR DVC.4Y4

Mapcode Global: WHGM7.0RMQ

Entry Name: Market cross 10m west of Cross Farmhouse

Scheduled Date: 19 March 1998

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1017622

English Heritage Legacy ID: 29718

County: Northamptonshire

Civil Parish: Harringworth

Traditional County: Northamptonshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northamptonshire

Church of England Parish: Harringworth St John the Baptist

Church of England Diocese: Peterborough

Details

The monument includes the remains of the market cross located approximately
10m west of Cross Farmhouse, at the junction of Deene Road with Waresley Road
and Gretton Road in the village of Harringworth.
The cross, which is Listed Grade I, is thought to be in or near its original
position. It is believed to belong to the medieval period, with the
architectural style suggesting a 14th century date.
The cross base stands to a height of approximately 0.8m. It is of mortared
block construction and includes a flight of five steps decreasing in size from
3.42m square to 1.6m square. The top step is iron cramped.
Supported on the cross base is a socket stone measuring approximately 0.4m
square by 1.1m high. The upper corners are chamfered to form an octagon.
The shaft is comprised of eight clustered columns of alternating girths in a
square arrangement approximately 0.3m across. The original cross head does
not survive and was replaced by a moulded capital with square abacus
(platform) and reticulated head when the cross was restored in 1837. The full
height of the cross is approximately 4.5m.
All modern made surfaces are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground
beneath them is included.

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 remains of the market cross at Harringworth represent a good example of a
medieval standing cross with a stepped base and clustered column shaft located
in or near its original position. Limited activity in the area surrounding
the cross indicates that archaeological deposits relating to the monument's
construction and use in this location will survive as buried features. Whilst
most of the cross has survived from medieval times, its subsequent restoration
illustrates the continued function of the cross as a public monument and
amenity.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Other
NMR monument details, SP 99 NW 7/347653, (1970)

Source: Historic England

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