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Market cross, Kirkby in Ashfield

List Entry Summary

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Market cross, Kirkby in Ashfield

List entry Number: 1012926

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Nottinghamshire

District: Ashfield

District Type: District Authority

Parish:

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 12-Sep-1995

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 23371

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

A standing cross is a free standing upright structure, usually of stone, mostly erected during the medieval period (mid 10th to mid 16th centuries AD). Standing crosses served a variety of functions. In churchyards they served as stations for outdoor processions, particularly in the observance of Palm Sunday. Elsewhere, standing crosses were used within settlements as places for preaching, public proclamation and penance, as well as defining rights of sanctuary. Standing crosses were also employed to mark boundaries between parishes, property, or settlements. A few crosses were erected to commemorate battles. Some crosses were linked to particular saints, whose support and protection their presence would have helped to invoke. Crosses in market places may have helped to validate transactions. After the Reformation, some crosses continued in use as foci for municipal or borough ceremonies, for example as places for official proclamations and announcements; some were the scenes of games or recreational activity. Standing crosses were distributed throughout England and are thought to have numbered in excess of 12,000. However, their survival since the Reformation has been variable, being much affected by local conditions, attitudes and religious sentiment. In particular, many cross-heads were destroyed by iconoclasts during the 16th and 17th centuries. Less than 2,000 medieval standing crosses, with or without cross-heads, are now thought to exist. The oldest and most basic form of standing cross is the monolith, a stone shaft often set directly in the ground without a base. The most common form is the stepped cross, in which the shaft is set in a socket stone and raised upon a flight of steps; this type of cross remained current from the 11th to 12th centuries until after the Reformation. Where the cross-head survives it may take a variety of forms, from a lantern-like structure to a crucifix; the more elaborate examples date from the 15th century. Much less common than stepped crosses are spire-shaped crosses, often composed of three or four receding stages with elaborate architectural decoration and/or sculptured figures; the most famous of these include the Eleanor crosses, erected by Edward I at the stopping places of the funeral cortege of his wife, who died in 1290. Also uncommon are the preaching crosses which were built in public places from the 13th century, typically in the cemeteries of religious communities and cathedrals, market places and wide thoroughfares; they include a stepped base, buttresses supporting a vaulted canopy, in turn carrying either a shaft and head or a pinnacled spire. Standing crosses contribute significantly to our understanding of medieval customs, both secular and religious, and to our knowledge of medieval parishes and settlement patterns. All crosses which survive as standing monuments, especially those which stand in or near their original location, are considered worthy of protection.

Although not complete, the market cross in Kirkby in Ashfield is a reasonably well preserved example of unusual form.

History

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Details

The monument includes the remains of a market cross, Listed Grade II, located at the junction of Church Street, Chapel Street and Sutton Road. The remains comprise a short calvary or base of four steps surmounted by a socket stone and the lower portion of a cross shaft. The shaft would originally have been approximately twice its present height and would have included a carved cross head. These components are now missing, possibly due to religious iconoclasm in the 16th or 17th centuries. The bottom step of the calvary is c.2m square and is partially buried beneath the asphalt surface of the modern pavement. Each of the three lower steps is constructed of a double layer of pavings while the fourth step, measuring c.60cm square is a single block. The visible height of the calvary is c.0.75m. The socket stone or socle is c.40cm square and c.30cm high. It has chamfered corners and a stepped profile and appears also to be constructed of more than one piece of stone. The shaft fragment above is c.1m high, of tapering rectangular section and has been broken and repaired. The edges are chamfered and widen out into a rounded, cushion-like pedestal at the base. At the top, it ends in a rounded shoulder from which the rest of the shaft then rose. The broken stump of the missing section can still be seen and shows it to have been integral with the lower portion. The missing section was clearly much narrower than the shaft below, measuring c.15cm x 10cm rather than c.25cm x 20cm. It appears to have been ovoid in section and probably rose to an integral cross head. The precise date of the cross is not known but the right to hold a market in Kirkby in Ashfield was granted in the reign of Henry III (1216-1272). The surface of the surrounding pavement is excluded from the scheduling though the ground underneath 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.

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Stapleton, A, Catalogue of Nottinghamshire Crosses, (1912), 14
Other
Shackleton Hill, Angela, (1994)

National Grid Reference: SK 48999 56231

Map

Map
© Crown Copyright and database right 2017. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2017. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1012926 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 18-Nov-2017 at 10:02:48.

End of official listing