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Milepost at Horse Bridge on the North Side of the A271, Hellingly

Description: Milepost at Horse Bridge on the North Side of the A271

Grade: II
Date Listed: 28 March 2012
English Heritage Building ID: 1408222

OS Grid Reference: TQ5790811320
OS Grid Coordinates: 557908, 111320
Latitude/Longitude: 50.8798, 0.2433

Locality: Hellingly
Local Authority: Wealden District Council
County: East Sussex
Country: England
Postcode: BN27 3GA

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Explore more of the area around Hellingly, East Sussex at Explore Britain.

Listing Text


Milepost, circa 1754 for the Union Point to Hailsham Turnpike Trust.

Reason for Listing

The cast iron milepost at Horse Bridge is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Design value: an unusually elaborate and visual design with bow and bells showing the distance from the church of St Mary-le-Bow in London;
* Early Date: an early example of a cast iron mile post; most survivals being C19 in date;
* Degree of survival: survives intact;
* Authenticity: shown in the same position on the 1875 Ordnance Survey map;
* Group value: one of a series of almost identical mile posts built for this turnpike trust, other examples of which have been listed elsewhere.


This is one of a series of mileposts erected by the Union Point to Hailsham Turnpike Trust circa 1754 between Hailsham and East Grinstead which shows the distance to St Mary-le-Bow Church in London. It is shown on the 1875 Ordnance Survey map in the same position.

These mile posts are known as 'rebus' or puzzle mile posts because of their visual reference to Bow Church, all having the relief of a bow with a string of bells dangling from it. This example has the figure 54 above the bow, the distance in mileage to Bow church, and above that is a relief of a buckle representing the Pelham family, prominent local landowners. The buckle represents the king's belt buckle, given to Sir John Pelham as a badge of honour following the Battle of Poitiers in 1356 when he and Sir Roger de la Warr captured John II King of France. Only the mile posts between 44 and 54 miles have this buckle.


MATERIALS: wood with attached cast iron front.

DESCRIPTION: gabled wooden post 100 cm high, 30 cm wide and 15 cm deep with attached gabled cast iron plate depicting the buckle of the Pelham family at the top, the figure 54 below it, representing the number of miles between the mile post and St Mary-le-Bow Church, London followed sequentially by a stylised bow and five stylised bells. The background is painted white and all relief elements are painted black.

Source: English Heritage

Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.