Tally-ho and rattle your chains
This heavy iron shackle and chain was found at Tally-Ho Corner in Finchley. It would have been used for chaining convicts. The crude ironwork may date to the 17th century or earlier.
Chained to the wall
The horseshoe-shaped piece is about 7.5cm across, the right size to fit round a man's ankle. It was locked by dropping the single oval link around the free loop of the heart-shaped link, and then securing it with a padlock. The chain is about 60cm long. It could have been attached to a staple on a wall, or possibly to a heavy ball.
How did this piece of jail equipment end up at Tally-Ho? We know of no prisons in this part of Finchley, but convicts were sometimes transported along the Great North Road, to and from the Old Bailey or gaols in the City of London. Tally-Ho also lies just to the north of Finchley Common, the notorious haunt of some of England's most feared 18th-century highwaymen.
Museum number A24973