'Market Cross' and Conduit at St. Albans
Artist: Schneibbilie, I.
View of 'Market Cross' at St Albans in Hertfordshire. The market place at St Albans was laid out in the 12th century and from the 13th century it was dominated by a large cross known as 'Eleanor's Cross' or the 'Queen's Cross'. The market place thus became known as Market Cross. The cross was built by master mason John Battle in 1294 at a cost of £100. It was one of a series of twelve crosses erected across the country, on the instructions of King Edward I, to mark the resting place of Queen Eleanor's body on its journey from Lincolnshire to Westminster in 1290. The cross became a focal point for the town and stood here until it was taken down in 1701. This view shows Market Cross in 1787.
The original 12 crosses were placed at Lincoln, Grantham, Stamford, Geddington, Northampton (at Hardingstone), Stony Stratford, Woburn, Dunstable, St Albans, Waltham, West Cheap in the City of London, and finally at the royal mews at Charing (Charing Cross). Only three survive today, at Waltham, Hardingstone and Geddington, but fragments of the Cheapside cross are in the collection of the Museum of London, and both Cheapside and Charing can be reconstructed from existing drawings.