Commercial Archaeology reported recently on a programme of upcoming archaeological investigations in the churchyard at the Grade I listed church of St. Michael and All Angels in Penkridge, South Staffordshire.
Given the great antiquity of the site as an ecclesiastical centre dating back to the Saxon era, it is anticipated that any archaeological remains which are present could date back to this period and throw light on the early history of the church and of Penkridge as a whole.
The first stage of the archaeological investigations, comprising a geophysical survey, has been successful in detecting the presence of a number of anomalies which may represent buried archaeological remains.
The geophysical survey suggests the presence of a number of sub-surface hollow features within the northern part of the churchyard in addition to a number of linear features which could represent wall foundations.
The latter are particularly interesting in that they could be structural remains of a much earlier building on the site.
Trial trenching to begin
The next stage in the evaluation will be to test the results of the geophysical survey by excavating a number of archaeological trial trenches. The trial trenches will be located in order to target anomalies identified in the geophysical survey.
The aim of the trial trenching is to establish the date, significance and level of preservation of the buried archaeological remains.
The trial trenching is likely to occur over the next couple of weeks and Commercial Archaeology will provide updates on the progress of the investigations.