Staunton cross


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1015138

Date first listed: 14-Feb-1997


Ordnance survey map of Staunton cross
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Gloucestershire

District: Forest of Dean (District Authority)

Parish: Staunton Coleford

National Grid Reference: SO 55058 12574


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

Reasons for Designation

Wayside crosses are one of several types of Christian cross erected during the medieval period, mostly from the 9th to 15th centuries AD. In addition to serving the function of reiterating and reinforcing the Christian faith amongst those who passed the cross and of reassuring the traveller, wayside crosses often fulfilled a role as waymarkers, especially in difficult and otherwise unmarked terrain. The crosses might be on regularly used routes linking ordinary settlements or on routes having a more specifically religious function, including those providing access to religious sites for parishioners and funeral processions, or marking long-distance routes frequented on pilgrimages. Over 350 wayside crosses are known nationally, concentrated in south west England throughout Cornwall and on Dartmoor where they form the commonest type of stone cross. A small group also occurs on the North York Moors. Relatively few examples have been recorded elsewhere and these are generally confined to remote moorland locations. Outside Cornwall almost all wayside crosses take the form of a `Latin' cross, in which the cross-head itself is shaped within the projecting arms of an unenclosed cross. In Cornwall wayside crosses vary considerably in form and decoration. The commonest type includes a round, or `wheel', head on the faces of which various forms of cross or related designs were carved in relief or incised, the spaces between the cross arms possibly pierced. The design was sometimes supplemented with a relief figure of Christ and the shaft might bear decorative panels and motifs. Less common forms in Cornwall include the `Latin' cross and, much rarer, the simple slab with a low relief cross on both faces. Rare examples of wheel-head and slab-form crosses also occur within the North York Moors group. Most wayside crosses have either a simple socketed base or show no evidence for a separate base at all. Wayside crosses contribute significantly to our understanding of medieval religious customs and sculptural traditions and to our knowledge of medieval routeways and settlement patterns. All wayside crosses which survive as earth- fast monuments, except those which are extremely damaged and removed from their original locations, are considered worthy of protection.

The wayside cross at Staunton survives well, and, with the exception of part of the shaft and cross head, has all of its original elements intact in what is likely to be its original location. It lies close to the Norman church of All Saints to which it relates. The cross is unusual in having both an octagonal calvary and socket stone.


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


The monument includes a cross situated on a roadside verge at Staunton. The cross lies on a grass covered south-facing slope at the junction of four roads outside the churchyard. The cross has a four step octagonal calvary, an octagonal socket stone and plinth, and a broken shaft. The first step of the calvary is 3.3m across and 0.3m high, with each side of the octagon measuring 1.35m. The second step is 0.3m high with the octagon 1.13m per side; the third and fourth steps are 0.25m high with octagonal sides measuring 0.95m and 0.65m wide respectively. Above this is the square base of the socket stone. This is 0.95m wide and 0.7m high with broaches of convex outline at alternate faces forming an octagonal top. This supports an octagonal plinth which is 0.75m across and 0.35m high with each side of the octagon measuring 0.35m across. The 0.47m high square shaft fits into a lead lined socket. It is 0.3m square at the base and the shaft tapers slightly towards the top. The whole cross is made of forest stone, and is thought to date from the 15th century. It is Listed Grade II.

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: 28806

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: Gloucestershire: The Cotswolds, (1970), 346
Pooley, C, Notes on the Old Crosses of Gloucestershire, (1868), 16-17

End of official listing