It’s Ascension Thursday today and the end of Rogationtide. This is a period of Christian prayer and fasting. There are two periods of rogation: April 25 and the Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday preceding Ascension Thursday. One of the customs during Rogationtide was the beating of the bounds when the minister would lead all his parishioners around the boundaries of their parish praying for their protection and perhaps whitewashing each boundary stone or marking it with chalk. The young lads of the district would also hit the stones with sticks.
It was important that every parishioner knew the limits of their parish so that there would be no dispute as to who was liable to contribute to the repair of the church for instance or who was entitled to be buried in the churchyard. It has also been suggested that as the parish would assume responsibility for the care of any children born out of wedlock within the parish it was important that the young lads had a good knowledge of the parish boundaries when they came to adolescent activities.
The photo shows the dry stone wall on Easby Moor denoting the boundary between Easby and Kildale parishes.