Becket's Chapel and the Crypt

Can I see Becket’s Chapel and the Crypt?


  • This part of the building, now used as a coffee bar, contains the oldest architecture in the whole site and has undergone many modifications in both medieval and post-medieval times.
The crypt
[The Crypt. Photographer: Christopher Bonfield]
  • The crypt was built between 1258 and 1267, and must have provided living accommodation for the friars of the sack.
  • In c. 1258, the friars of the sack obtained permission to celebrate services, ring their bell and bury the dead. It was probably at this time that they built the brick vaulting in the crypt, and added Becket’s chapel as their church.
  • When the building was taken over by the black friars in 1307, Becket’s chapel served them as their first church while the much larger present church was been erected to the south.
  • At the Reformation the crypt and Becket’s chapel were converted into a dwelling house.
  • The chapel was destroyed in 1874.
                   Beckett's Chapel 1856
                       [Photo of Becket's Chapel, 1856. Photographer: Hallam Ashley]