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


The Godstone

Christianised Site

<b>The Godstone</b>Posted by jimmydImage © Jim Dyson 2004
This site is of disputed antiquity. If you have any information that could help clarify this site's authenticity, please post below or leave a post in the forum.
Nearest Town:Formby (2km ENE)
OS Ref (GB):   SD280067 / Sheet: 108
Latitude:53° 33' 5.95" N
Longitude:   3° 5' 12.79" W

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<b>The Godstone</b>Posted by listerinepree <b>The Godstone</b>Posted by jimmyd <b>The Godstone</b>Posted by jimmyd


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We went one dark winter evening and tried to tiptoe around the graveyard by the light of nearby street lamps, only finding it after some 30 minutes searching around the wrong end of the church. Its in the west of the church yard, near the edge where the trees are. Diminutive but an interesting carving. listerinepree Posted by listerinepree
30th May 2011ce

This is a small stone situated in the graveyard of St. Lukes Church in Formby, near Liverpool. This curiously inscribed and mysterious stone is roughly 18 inches in height and was moved from the old village green to its present location in 1879. Any information as to the stone's folklore and antiquity is unknown. On a personal note it's gratifying to find something this odd and historic in my home town. jimmyd Posted by jimmyd
6th December 2004ce


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"Early Christians carved some steps, a cross and a circle to demonstrate that the way to Heaven was through the Christian Church"
From John Burke's English Curiosities
jimmyd Posted by jimmyd
9th August 2007ce

THE GODSTONE, FORNBY.—In the churchyard of Saint Luke, Formby—a village on the Lancashire coast between the Mersey and the Ribble—is to be seen an ancient stone, bearing on it an incised cross on a Calvary of three steps surmounted by an orb. Until recently Roman Catholics were buried here, and the coffins carried three times round this stone, presumably (as in other instances) following the way of the sun. The custom may be very ancient, and indeed a pagan survival. Roman Catholics, moreover, in visiting the churchyard, used to kneel down and pray before this stone. The church has been rebuilt, but was of Norman or pro-Norman foundation. The font is remarkable, polygonal in plan, with twentythree sides. HENRY TAYLOR.,
Birklands, Birkdale, Lancashire.
From N+Q, MArch 7th, 1908. Do I detect a hint of 'Those wacky Roman Catholics!!' in his attitude? Perhaps. But it doesn't shed any more light on the stone's mysterious roots. He doesn't seem aware of it being moved into the churchyard (supposedly only 30 years before, according to Jimmyd's notes) - in any case quite a weird thing to do with an allegedly pagan stone. You think you'd sooner be moving such things out of churchyards.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
3rd September 2006ce
Edited 3rd September 2006ce

A little further info from Witches, Fairies and Things That Go Bump

It's origins lie in pagan times when the recently deceased would be carried around it three times.

Early Christians carved some steps, a cross and a circle to demonstrate that the way to Heaven was through the Christian Church.
jimmyd Posted by jimmyd
20th October 2005ce
Edited 20th October 2005ce