Wayside cross known as Stump Cross in Mount Ephraim Plantation


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1015262

Date first listed: 11-Mar-1964

Date of most recent amendment: 23-Dec-1996


Ordnance survey map of Wayside cross known as Stump Cross in Mount Ephraim Plantation
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Norfolk

District: Breckland (District Authority)

Parish: Weeting-with-Broomhill

National Grid Reference: TL 77356 91366


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.

Stump Cross is a fine and well preserved example of a medieval wayside cross embellished with some unusual architectural detail, and its association with the old pilgrim road gives it additional interest and significance. Although it has been repaired in modern times, it is believed to stand near its original position, and it is likely that archaeological deposits relating to its construction and use on this site will survive in the area immediately around and beneath it.


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


The monument includes the medieval wayside cross known as Stump Cross which stands in a clearing in Mount Ephraim Plantation c.290m west of Pilgrim's Walk and c.70m south east of another old road used as a public path and bridleway. The cross is of Barnack stone and includes a shaft supported on a socket stone. The socket stone stands 0.4m above the ground and is 0.73m square in section at the base, with carved broach stops, now heavily weathered, and three orders of octagonal moulding on the upper surface. The base, which is buried below the ground surface, includes a step. The shaft is square in cross section with roll moulding at the angles and is set diagonally to the square of the socket stone. It stands c.1.8m tall above the upper surface of the socket stone and measures 0.31m across at the base, tapering gradually. The head of the cross is missing. The shaft formerly lay in two pieces on this site and was repaired and re-erected c.1958.

The cross has been identified as that described by Tom Martin in 1720 as standing in two parts on either side of a road on a hill between Broomhill and Methwold, and according to Blomefield it stood beside the Walsingham Way (Pilgrim's Walk).

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: 21432

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
Blomefield, F, An Essay towards a Topographical History of the County of Norfolk, (1805), 173
Cozens-Hardy, , 'Norfolk Archaeology' in Norfolk Crosses, , Vol. 25, (1935), 329
AM7 NF 72, (1958)

End of official listing