Sited at the landing place of the old Itchen Ferry, the Cross House provided shelter for those using the ferry. It consists of two walls crossing each other at right angles, supporting a conical tiled roof, thus giving shelter from wind in any direction. The tiled roof was removed in the 1930s (image 3), but has since been replaced.
It was first mentioned in 1577, but was probably a medieval structure. The base could possibly be the boundary cross from Itchenworth mentioned in medieval documents. A stone tablet (image 1) was originally fixed to the wall, showing the Town Arms, the date 1634 and the initials P.C. The date refers to the date of a major repair and the initials are those of Peter Clungeon, mayor in 1634. The tablet is now in the Tudor House Museum.
This is a landing place on the east side of the Itchen close to the Crosshouse from which it takes its name. The hard and its opposite number, the Royal Oak Hard, indicate the line of the traditional crossing of the Itchen.
Southampton Occasional Notes,2nd Series by ‘Townsman’, p48. (HS/h)
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