Ancient Monuments

History on the Ground

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The Great Merestone medieval boundary marker on Finlow Hill, 245m east of Mottram House

A Scheduled Monument in Over Alderley, Cheshire East

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Latitude: 53.2878 / 53°17'15"N

Longitude: -2.2094 / 2°12'33"W

OS Eastings: 386134.776

OS Northings: 376774.098

OS Grid: SJ861767

Mapcode National: GBR FZ0F.G4

Mapcode Global: WHBBG.1M5D

Entry Name: The Great Merestone medieval boundary marker on Finlow Hill, 245m east of Mottram House

Scheduled Date: 20 July 2001

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1020194

English Heritage Legacy ID: 33862

County: Cheshire East

Civil Parish: Over Alderley

Traditional County: Cheshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Cheshire

Church of England Parish: Birtles St Catherine

Church of England Diocese: Chester


The monument includes a large boulder, half buried in a field on Finlow Hill.
It lies on the former medieval boundary between the parishes of Nether
Alderley and Over Alderley, but later agricultural work has removed the bank
on which it must have stood. This stone is referred to locally as the `Great
Merestone' and is one of a number mentioned in a description of a
perambulation of the parish and estate boundaries of May 1598.
The stone is a roughly squared boulder about 1.30m in diameter and made of a
fine-grained sandstone, possibly a glacial erratic. It stands 0.40m above the
present ground level. On the top surface is a damaged carved cross with the
arms about 0.30m across.

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

The Great Merestone medieval boundary marker on Finlow Hill, 245m east of
Mottram House, appears on a description of the parish and estate boundaries of
the area of Alderley Edge dated 1598. The stone is known locally as the `Great
Merestone' and has attracted much attention as a semi-sacred object. Together
with two other markers on the Edge they constitute an uncommon survival of
medieval boundaries and provide important evidence of the extent of the
medieval parochial and estate landholdings.
Although the site is not open to the public, the stone is visible from the
road from Finlow Hill Lane to Bradford Lodge, and so the monument provides
an educational resource for the numerous visitors to this area.

Source: Historic England


Manchester Museum and National Trust Survey, (1998)
Norbury, Mrs , 2000,

Source: Historic England

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