St Michael and All Angels’ church, Old London Road, Mickleham

A programme of investigation comprising historic building recording and excavation of inhumations by S Watson of PCA, was undertaken after partial demolition of the current vestry, and the subsequent ground reduction of the site prior to the construction of a new enlarged vestry and during associated drainage works. After the demolition of the vestry (presumed to have been constructed in 1823 with later alterations), the lower part of the northern exterior wall of the chancel was exposed. Within this wall, historic features of the church fabric were revealed, principally the sills of two 12th century lancet windows, which had been partly covered by the roofline of the vestry (and will be again after redevelopment). An earlier, higher, roofline was also revealed by the presence of a wall scar. Seventeen inhumations, containing human skeletal remains, were encountered during the ground reduction, and further disarticulated bones were also recovered. All the inhumations were found at much the same level and are presumed to belong to the same period, with the dating evidence from the coffin grips and shroud pins indicating a late 18th/early 19th century date. A small amount of residual Roman pottery and ceramic building material was recovered within both the area of the proposed vestry and drainage channels. It is likely that the finds have been redistributed by grave digging or ground disturbance associated with the building of the original vestry, but they do suggest Roman settlement activity on or near the site.