The Puleston Cross is a Butter cross in the market town of Newport in the very east of Shropshire. Once a tall, carved stone cross, only the base and shaft remain: whether the original mediæval cross was torn down at the Reformation or during Cromwell's time is unknown, but the latter is suggested as the cross was moved in 1633.
The Cross sits in Middle Row, formerly Rotten Row, and marks the market place. The cross was built in the early 14th century and was moved to this position in 1633 after the new market hall was built by William Adams.
The twentieth century plaque on the base records that "The Market or 'Butter' Cross" was originally set up in 1286 in memory of Roger De Pyvelesdon, from whom its is also known as 'The Puleston Cross', and that it was probably mutilated during the Civil War.
Records show that the cross was indeed set up in memory of Sir John Puleston who lost his life on active service in 1272, during the reign of King Edward I. It was moved to the current position and then the Butter Cross (market) was built around it by Richard Barnefield in 1632.
Some records indicate that the cross was rebuilt by Thomas Talbott in 1665 (after the Restoration). The market was demolished in 1866. It was taken down as there was no further use for it when the new market hall was built
The Market cross was spared demolition and given railings to protect the cross from damage; these have since been taken down.
In the summer of 2010 the cobbles that surrounded the monument were removed and replaced with paving, stopping cars parking around the cross, with Archaeologists from English Heritage carrying out work on the surroundings of the monument, uncovering that the monument had stood in the same position since around 1280 and finding the foundations of the 1850s market hall.
This meant the designs for the Buttercross pavements were amended so that the footprint of the foundations can be traced and by digging a small, deeper hole around the monument, the team have also unearthed original cobbles which appear to date back hundreds of years and small pieces of china and animal teeth were also found and have been taken away for examination.
- Location map: 52°46’10"N, 2°22’45"W