Harley’s Stone, Shrewsbury

[As Kathy notes in a comment to this article, a recent post on the Facebook Memories of Shropshire group indicates substantial recent damage to the stone as shown in a photograph there. I’ve no information on what  might have happened to it, though the photograph below does suggest previous repair. DH, 1st August 2016]

harley stone 2

To be found in The Quarry, Shrewsbury, a stone’s throw from the Dingle. My wife thinks that we should demand ‘our’ bit of the park back.

harley stone plaque

It reads:

This small boulder is said to be the anchor stone of the last surviving grazing allotment in The Quarry. This belonged to the Harley family. Livestock were tied to the stone by a leash of no more than 16 yards in length. These ‘circular’ allotments once made use of ‘the entire herbage’, ensuring that the grass was kept short throughout the year.

However, I’ve no evidence of a direct family link with the Harley family of Rossall, Bicton, who apparently refused to sell their grazing allotment when the Corporation was acquiring land in the Quarry in the 18th century. So I guess we won’t be keeping a sheep just yet. No grass on the patio. [As it happens, we’re now living in the West Country, but we still don’t have a large enough lawn to keep a sheep.]

There is one family connection apart from the name, though. My niece tells me that this is where her fiancé (now her husband) proposed to her. I’m sure he doesn’t only want her for our property. 😉

David Harley
Small Blue-Green World
ESET Senior Research Fellow


2 thoughts on “Harley’s Stone, Shrewsbury

  1. Kathy

    Hi David – seen on a FB page that the stone has sadly suffered some damage:-( It is on the memories of shropshire page if you want to see it or I could email you a photo. Kathy

    1. David Harley Post author

      Thanks, Kathy. I have seen and commented on that post by Mo Bennett, and I’ll probably mention it in this post later in the day, with a link to the post.


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