Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number: 1006057
Date first listed: 08-Dec-1975
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: Staffordshire Moorlands (District Authority)
National Park: PEAK DISTRICT
National Grid Reference: SK 02761 55685
Milestone 330m south east of High Cross.
Reasons for Designation
Milestones are upright markers erected along routeways to indicate to travellers the distances in miles to destinations. The idea can be traced back to Roman milestones erected by the Roman army in the first centuries AD. During the medieval period the upkeep of roads declined and responsibility for way-marking largely fell to the Church, whose markers frequently took the form of crosses. This system collapsed with the Reformation. As towns and cities prospered and trade increased the need for improved roads and standardised distances augmented and in 1592 the statute mile was defined by Act of Parliament, equal to 1760 yards. In the C17 the General Letter Office was established but few roads were suitable for conveying mail and passengers by post coach. The Turnpike Acts, which enabled tolls to be levied on road users during the 18th century, revolutionised highway maintenance and made provision for guide posts and milestones. A substantial number of turnpike milestones and guide posts still survive, and are often of a distinctive style peculiar to one Turnpike Trust or to part of a Trust's length of road. Between 1888 and 1930, highways maintenance, including signposting, passed to County and District Councils, with national government taking responsibility for trunk roads in 1936. The locations, style and level of standardisation of guide posts and milestones provide very tangible indicators of post-medieval development of the road system; those erected during the 17th and 18th centuries formed an essential stimulus to the growth of the nation's internal trade which provided the setting for the Industrial Revolution.
The milestone 330m south east of High Cross survives comparatively well and represents an important survival of early road measurement and management which contributed to the development of an improved national road network which facilitated communication, and trade during the 17th and 18th centuries.
This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 9 June 2015. 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 milestone situated by the side of a staggered junction on the moorland ridge known as Morridge. The milestone stands upright, adjacent to a staggered junction where the road which runs between Bradnop and Onecote crosses the road which runs along the length of Morridge. The stone measures approximately 0.3m square and stands 0.5m high. Its west face has an indiscernible place name 10 miles away, its north face indicates Leek 2 miles away, its east face indicates Longnor 6 miles away and its south side marks Onecot 1mile away. The milestone dates to 1744. The ridgeway road runs along the length of Morridge and is believed to date back to at least the medieval period as a packhorse routeway.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: ST 246
Legacy System: RSM - OCN
This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
End of official listing