The King’s Stone.
Reasons for Designation
Standing stones are prehistoric ritual or ceremonial monuments with dates ranging from the Late Neolithic to the end of the Bronze Age for the few excavated examples. They comprise single or paired upright orthostatic slabs, ranging from under lm to over 6m high where still erect. They are often conspicuously sited and close to other contemporary monument classes. They can be accompanied by various features: many occur in or on the edge of round barrows, and where excavated, associated subsurface features have included stone cists, stone settings, and various pits and hollows filled in with earth containing human bone, cremations, charcoal, flints, pots and pot sherds. Similar deposits have been found in excavated sockets for standing stones, which range considerably in depth. Several standing stones also bear cup and ring marks. Standing stones may have functioned as markers for routeways, territories, graves, or meeting points, but their accompanying features show they also bore a ritual function and that they form one of several ritual monument classes of their period that often contain a deposit of cremation and domestic debris as an integral component. No national survey of standing stones has been undertaken, and estimates range from 50 to 250 extant examples, widely distributed throughout England but with concentrations in Cornwall, the North Yorkshire Moors, Cumbria, Derbyshire and the Cotswolds. Standing stones are important as nationally rare monuments, with a high longevity and demonstrating the diversity of ritual practices in the Late Neolithic and Bronze Age. Consequently all undisturbed standing stones and those which represent the main range of types and locations would normally be considered to be of national importance.
The King's standing Stone is well preserved example of a rare monument type which retains important archaeological information; the socket stone will retain significant archaeological deposits relating to its erection and subsequent use. In addition to it being an example of a rare later prehistoric monument, the King’s Stone has important historical connections including that with the Battle of Flodden Field.
This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 16 May 2016. This record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.
The monument includes a standing stone of Late Neolithic/early Bronze Age date, situated on a slight knoll. The standing stone is of cherty magnesium limestone and measures approximately 1m by 1.3m and stands to a maximum height of 2.5m.
The King’s Stone, also known as the ‘Stone of Crookham More’ has long been an important landmark. It was mentioned frequently in the 16th century as a meeting place for raiders. In 1533 the garrisons of the border castles were ordered to meet at ‘Crookham Stone’ to avenge the burning of Cornhill and Wark. The name King’s Stone was given to the stone as tradition holds that it marks the spot where King James IV was killed at the Battle of Flodden Field in 1513.