Stanage Pole. Photo: Peak District NPA

Stanage Pole. Photo: Peak District NPA

An ancient marker close to one of the Peak District’s most popular climbing venues is to be replaced after suffering the ravages of time.

Stanage Pole, on the moor above Stanage Edge, is a historic landmark on a former packhorse route.

But the top part of the pole has had to be removed because its wood was rotten and it posed a risk to passers-by.

The Peak District National Park Authority said it is now looking at ways of replacing the whole structure.

An authority spokesperson said: “Standing on Hallam Moors, close to Stanage Edge, the pole marks the border of Derbyshire and South Yorkshire and dates back several hundred years.

“It is on an ancient packhorse route known as Long Causeway and is also thought to have acted as a boundary marker for the parishes of Sheffield, Hathersage and Ecclesfield.”

The pole stands about 600m back from the rockclimbing Mecca of Stanage Edge.

The pole stands close to the popular climbing venue Stanage Edge

The pole stands close to the popular climbing venue Stanage Edge

Stella McGuire, the Peak District National Park Authority’s member representative for cultural heritage, discovered a text from the Chatsworth archives, dated 1795, which describes ‘a place called Thurstone Pole but of late called Stannage Pole’. There is also an earlier map reference from the 1760s

The book, Peakland Roads and Trackways, by AE and EM Dodds, states that a pole has been on the site from at least 1550, believing several of the initials carved in the supporting stones to be from parish rural surveyors who replaced the pole down the years.

Ms McGuire said: “This has been a familiar landmark for such a long time and we will be talking to local people about an appropriate replacement.

“We had no choice about removing the top section because it was a danger to the public, but it’s fair to say that it has been replaced a number of times over the years

“There are some wonderful archive photographs of the pole and it must have been a very important marker for travellers, especially at times when there was heavy snow on the ground.”

The marker is named as Stanedge Pole on Ordnance Survey maps.

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