Packhorse bridge at the Post Office

Overview

Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
1007138
Date first listed:
17-Jan-1964

Map

Ordnance survey map of Packhorse bridge at the Post Office
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2019. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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Location

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County:
Cumbria
District:
South Lakeland (District Authority)
Parish:
Stainton
National Grid Reference:
SD 52374 85904

Summary

Packhorse Bridge, immediately south of Dreamland Farm.

Reasons for Designation

Medieval and early post-medieval single span bridges are structures designed to carry a road or track over a river by means of a single arch, typically 3m- 6m in span. They were constructed throughout the medieval period, most commonly using timber. Stone began to be used instead of timber in the 12th century and became increasingly common in the 14th and 15th centuries. Many medieval bridges were repaired, modified or extensively rebuilt in the post- medieval period. During the medieval period the construction and maintenance of bridges was frequently carried out by large estates and the Church, especially monastic institutions which developed long distance packhorse routes between their landholdings. Some stone built medieval bridges still survive. These can be classified into three main types based on the profile of the arch which is typically pointed, semi-circular or flattened. A common medieval feature is the presence of stone ashlar ribs underneath the arch. The bridge abutments and revetting of the river banks also form part of the bridge. Where medieval bridges have been altered in later centuries, original features are sometimes concealed behind later stonework, including remains of earlier timber bridges. Bridges were common and important features of medieval towns and the countryside and allowed easy access along a well developed road and trackway system. However, only around 16 largely unaltered medieval single span bridges have so far been recognised to survive in England. All these are considered to be of national importance. A larger number retain significant medieval or post-medieval remains, allowing the original form of the bridge to be determined. These examples are also nationally important.

The Packhorse Bridge immediately south of Dreamland Farm is upstanding and is well-preserved. The bridge provides insight into the importance of local river crossings during the earlier post-medieval period. The monument will contain archaeological deposits relating to its construction and use within its upstanding structure and also within its buried foundations and cuttings.

History

See Details.

Details

This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 29 March 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 the remains of a packhorse bridge of 17th century date, which spans Stainton Beck at Stainton. The bridge, which has a single segmental arch, is built from coursed limestone rubble with a coping of rough limestone blocks and is topped by a 1m high parapet. The internal width of the bridge is 0.9m with the whole bridge being 1.5m wide. The monument is a listed building Grade II.

Legacy

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
CU 384
Legacy System:
RSM - OCN

Sources

Other
PastScape Monument No:- 43103

Legal

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

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