People rushing to catch trains at King’s Cross are often oblivious of what they are standing next to, and right by a pedestrian crossing is an old milestone.
It’s exceptionally easy to overlook in the hustle of city life, being very badly weather (or pollution) worn, and barely readable.
There seems to be an air of slight mystery about it though — as unlike many mile stones, it’s not that well recorded. It might not even be in its original location. But clearly someone somewhere thinks this seemingly random lump of stone is important — or doesn’t want to take the risk of getting rid of it just in case it is important.
Even the authoritive Survey of London struggles, and suggests it might be either a boundary maker or mile stone.
There is a note of a 1 mile stone to Holborn on this map, which seems to be one of only two records of its existence.
Although a radius map shows that Holborn is considerably less than one mile distant, road traffic had to go north from this location and loop around to get back down to Holborn, so the route seems to be about a mile if you take that into account.
Just one other record exists, and it also suggests it is a milestone — as there was once a bus stop at this location known as the mile stone.
Beyond that, I can say nothing more than to suggest when you’re out and about, keep an eye out for this mystery lump of stone just outside 345 Gray’s Inn Road.
It also seems to be a suitable dumping ground for rubbish by the lazy. Which is a shame.
Location map and local interesting places
- 2] The British Library
- 3] The Francis Crick Institute
- 4] Canal Museum
- 5] Foundling Museum
- 6] House of Illustration
- 7] Charles Dickens Museum
- 8] Wellcome Collection