Standing cross 140m north of The Old Hall


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1018130

Date first listed: 24-Jul-1998


Ordnance survey map of Standing cross 140m north of The Old Hall
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Nottinghamshire

District: Newark and Sherwood (District Authority)

Parish: Holme

National Grid Reference: SK8017259095


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.

The remains of the standing cross at Holm is an example of a medieval cross with a square socket stone and octagonal shaft. It is believed to stand in or near its original position and limited activity immediately surrounding the cross indicates that archaeological deposits relating to the monument's construction and use are likely to survive intact. The value of this monument is enhanced by the rare survival of documentation relating to its association with the cross at North Muskham.


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


The monument includes the remains of a standing stone cross located on a grass verge, just south of a crossroads in the centre of the village of Holme, 140m north of The Old Hall. The cross is medieval in date and includes a socket stone and the remains of a shaft. It is Listed Grade II. The socket stone, which stands 0.5m high, is square in plan with mouldings and the corners and measures approximately 0.75m by 0.75m. The socket stone appears to stand on a large earthfast rock, measuring approximately 1.5m along its western edge, but this is almost entirely buried. Set into the socket stone is a stone shaft which is octagonal in plan and survives to a height of 0.5m. The cross head is now missing. From the crossroads the western road leads down to the River Trent to a point from where a ferry formerly transported passengers across the river to North Muskham. Before `entering the peril of the waters' each passenger commended themselves at the cross in Holme or North Muskham to the mercy of god. It is believed that the cross was also used as a place where transactions relating to the local wool trade were validated. A cross of identical form survives directly opposite on the west side of the river at North Muskham and is the subject of a separate scheduling. The post and wire fence to the east of the cross is excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath this 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: 29921

Legacy System: RSM


Books and journals
'Transactions of the Thoroton Society' in North Muskham, (1905)

End of official listing