The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

Murder Stone

Standing Stone / Menhir


I do not think that "the murder stone" is the correct name for this standing stone. The murder stone is a relatively modern, inscribed stone plaque on a road about 3 miles from this site, joining Disley to Whaley Bridge. I suspect that this misnomer began on another web site and has now been propagated here.

Sadly, though I have visited this stone, I do not know its proper name or purpose. I would be very interested to hear from anyone who does.

[This stone is listed as a Grade II scheduled monument in Cheshire, with the name 'The Murder Stone'. It is said to date from the Early Bronze Age. See Baza's links below. TMA Ed. ]
Posted by dubbin
22nd April 2006ce
Edited 15th August 2007ce

Comments (8)

This is not the Murder Stone.

The Murder Stone is approx. half a mile away at the side of the Disley to Whaley Bridge road and marks the site of the murder of a William Wood of Eyam on 16th July 18223.

The stone pictured is on Hawkhurst Head just a couple of hundred yards down from the well documented Dipping Stone. It looks potentially interesting and may well have had some significance in the past but I've seen no mention of it anywhere and it is not referred to on any old maps that I've seen (unlike the Dipping Stone which).

I agree with Dubbin that the misnomer began quite recently on another 'stones' website and the error has sadly started to spread.

Lancastrian, 16th July 2007

Posted by Lancastrian
16th July 2007ce

Have you looked at the link at the bottom of the page to English Heritage's Schedule of Ancient Monuments?
If this stone is not prehistoric and is not called the Murder Stone, then perhaps you should inform English Heritage of their mistakes.

baza Posted by baza
16th July 2007ce

Do you mean the link shown on your comment dated 23rd April 2006? This is a different stone to the one covered by this entry - that's the very point I was trying to make.

Your link is to the real murder stone that commemorates the murder of William Wood - as detailed in my comment above.

This genuine 'murder stone' sits on the rodaside verge on the Disley-Whaley Bridge Road, it's still there and is in good condition although partially hidden by undergrowth at this time of year . You'll notice from your link that it is a rectangular stone and it bears the inscription to William Wood and his murder in 1823. The stone was erected in the 19th century as a memorial to him.

The standing stone pictured on this entry however (see picture at the top) is not the murder stone - even from the photo here it is quite clearly a different shape (note the pointed top in particular) and in a different location to the real muder stone.

This is an unnamed stone which sits in the middle of a field at Hawkhurst Head, a couple of hundred yards downhill from the well known dipping stone. This unnamed stone is less than half a mile away from the murder stone and that probably exlains the confusion over the name which I think arose from a misnomer in another stones website.

The nearby dipping stone is well documented and can be seen on old maps going back hundreds of years. This unnamed stone however has never featured on old maps and I've yet to see any mention of it in any old records.

This unnamed stone does look interesting and it's in a superb setting. I've viewed it/ photographed it several times..but given the complete lack of any historic references to the stone it may well be that it was placed here in quite recent times.

Posted by Lancastrian
17th July 2007ce

(including photo) another photo

Both would seem to support what Lancastrian is saying, namely that 'The Murder Stone' is a different monument to the stone described and photographed here.

This unnamed stone does look a good one, though....
Posted by dissolving
2nd November 2013ce
Two murder stones,
one a bronze age menhir.
The other a commemorative stone marking the place of an actual murder, hence the murder stone.
Seems clear to me.
postman Posted by postman
2nd November 2013ce
Fair enough! :)

Hoping to visit the bronze age one soon, anyways.
Posted by dissolving
2nd November 2013ce
I'd suggest combining it with a walk up to Reed hill or the bow stones. postman Posted by postman
2nd November 2013ce
Yes I think I will, it's a nice spot up by there. Funny thing is I know the bowstones well, have been up there a few times over the years, but never having realised this was in the vicinity. I often dash by this bit of the peak on the way to deepest limestone country. Seems like a nice extension to the walk from Lyme Park, perhaps. I'll take a gander at Reed's hill, too. Ta for the tip! Posted by dissolving
3rd November 2013ce
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