Builders accidentally discover the hidden tombs of five former archbishops of Canterbury while carrying out a museum refurbishment

Apr 16, 2017 by

by Rory Tingle, Mailonline:

Builders have accidentally stumbled across the tombs of five archbishops of Canterbury dating back to the 1600s during a museum refurbishment.

A total of 30 lead coffins were found as workers tried to even out the floor in the chancel of St Mary-at-Lambeth to create an exhibition area for the Garden Museum.

They cut a six-inch hole in the floor by mistake, and used a mobile phone on a stick to film a flight of stairs leading down to a hidden vault.

The coffins were found lying on top of each other alongside an archbishop’s mitre, a symbol of office similar to a crown, Harry Mount reported in The Sunday Telegraph.

Two of the coffins had metal plates bearing the names of Richard Bancroft (who served from 1604 to 1610), and John Moore (1783 to 1805).

The nameplate of Moore’s wife, Catherine, was also found.

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