Crosby Ravensworth churchyard cross


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Date of most recent amendment:


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

Eden (District Authority)
Crosby Ravensworth
National Park:
National Grid Reference:
NY 62143 14823

Reasons for Designation

A standing cross is a free-standing upright structure which bears a head consisting of the arms of a cross, lantern, globe or finial. Crosses vary in their degree of elaboration ranging from simple orthostats to highly ornate constructions. Components to be expected of the simpler types include a base, a shaft and a head. Crosses of more complex type may take the form of an embellished pinnacle or spire. The most complex have a shaft which is raised upon an open-sided shelter. Surviving standing crosses are almost invariably made of stone although it is known that many former crosses were made of wood and have since disappeared. The main purpose of raising standing crosses was to encourage remembrance and worship of Christ. In practice, standing crosses served a considerable variety of other functions. Those erected in churchyards served as stations for outdoor processions and were closely associated with Palm Sunday solemnities. Outside churchyards standing crosses were used as places for preaching, the definition of the extent of rights of sanctuary, and places of public proclamation and penance. Standing crosses were also employed to mark parish and property boundaries or to define the edges of settlements. Wayside crosses sometimes marked routes across difficult terrain and also appear to have been used as setting-down places for corpses during funeral journeys. Crosses were erected and used between c.1050-1540. Comparatively few standing crosses now survive intact. Those originally embellished with statuary and imagery, particularly on the cross head, were prone to damage or destruction by iconoclasts, particularly the Puritans during the Civil Wars. Despite post-Reformation damage and loss of the cross head, Crosby Ravensworth churchyard cross survives reasonably well and still retains architectural decoration distinctive of the Early English style.


The monument is Crosby Ravensworth churchyard cross. It is located to the south of the church and includes a medieval chamfered stone shaft 2.1m high that measures 0.3m square at its base and tapers to 0.2m square at its top. The shaft consists of three fragments fastened together and is set into a socket stone 0.7m square and 0.4m high. The shaft's chamfered corners have widely spaced individual dog-tooth decoration. The cross was damaged during Cromwellian times when the top was broken off and discarded. It is listed Grade II. Two flagstones adjacent to the base of the socket stone 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.


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

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Relph, J T, A Walk Round Crosby Ravensworth Church, (1991), 4
DOE, List of Buildings of Historic & Architectural Interest,
Morris,R., MPP Single Monument Class Description - Standing Crosses, (1990)
SMR No. 1732, Cumbria SMR, Crosby Ravensworth Churchyard Cross, (1987)


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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