I have a series of these along an A road in Lancashire and initially thought that they were benchmarks. As others have stated they are in fact GPO markers, showing the sites of junctions in a main telegraph ortelephone trunk line cable. Mine had the ER cipher (VR and GR are known) , and one had the remains of the measurement figure plates that slip into the grooves below the ft - ins markings. Most were burried by tarmac, etc. Deeper than theywould originaly have been, but they are actually quite long with about half of the thing buried when installed.A number of these posts are included in the "Connected Earth" website as GPO trunk line markers. See http://www.connected-earth.
com/Thecollection/Artefacts/(put 'marker' in the search box).I have tried several times to add an image to this email, but failed - sorry!Peter Iles, LancashireSent from Samsung tablet.-------- Original message --------From: "Morrison, Jennifer" <[log in to unmask] GOV.UK>Date: 25/07/2017 09:35 (GMT+00:00)Subject: help with identifying a metal benchmark
A member of the public has sent me the attached photo of a cast iron benchmark. There are several of these on Durham Road, Low Fell, Gateshead. They depict the Royal cyphers GR or ER. Underneath there is a space for feet and inches.
Presumably they mark the position of some sort of services? I wondered if they might be connected to the old tram system as there was a tram terminus close by.
The ‘finder’ suggests that they are G.P.O in origin, perhaps on the line of early phone connections?
Any ideas? Has anyone else got these in their patch?
Jennifer Morrison BA (Hons), MA, MCIfA
Tyne and Wear Archaeology Officer
Newcastle City Council
Newcastle upon Tyne
Tel: 0191 2116218
Fax: 0191 2114810
On-line Tyne and Wear Historic Environment Record: www.twsitelines.info
Any statements, views or opinions within this e-mail are those of the author and are informal; they do not prejudice any decision that may be later taken by the Local Planning Authority.