Adel Churchyard
Bronze Age Carved Stones (PRAWR 207, 208)
Adel, North Leeds  OS Map Ref SE27394020
OS Maps - Landranger 104 (Leeds & Bradford), Explorer 297 (Lower Wharfedale & Washburn Valley)

Adel Churchyard Plague Stone
Adel is a quiet area of north Leeds and its churchyard holds a couple of interesting carved stones. In the southwest of the churchyard where a footpath leads to a gate through the wall are a number of stones, some are either Roman or Medieval but two certainly seem to be much earlier.

The first stone, shown in the photograph above, is known as the Plague Stone (PRAWR 207) and is a cylindrical block that has a central basin cut into it and could indeed have been used as a medieval plague stone or millstone but it also has six or seven cups cut into the top face one of which has a either a ring or horseshoe shaped groove around it. The stone is thought to have come from somewhere in the Eccup area (a short distance away to the northeast) and was moved here in the 19th century but without an accurate original location and because of the later reshaping of the stone it is impossible to put the carvings into any kind of context.

The second stone (photograph below) has also been moved from its original position, this time from Adel Moor where it was discovered in 1870 during clearance and is known to have been found with a collection of flint arrowheads. This square slab propped up against a wall close to the Plague Stone has a very unusual design for this region - it consists of a central circular depression from which a cross shape emerges, this being contained within concentric diamond shaped grooves that continue out towards the edges of the stone. I'm not entirely convinced that the design is prehistoric although Eric Cowling suggested that it may have been a cist cover which sounds plausible and it is also listed by the Ilkley Archaeology Group as stone 208.

Suggested Date: Bronze Age

PRAWR = Prehistoric Rock Art of the West Riding (Boughey and Vickerman 2003)
Adel Churchyard Incised Stone

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