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The Rich Vault
during Sonning Church's Restoration (1852)

One other vault we thought it necessary to open, namely, that under the East end of the South Chancel Aisle, belonging to the family of Sir Thomas Rich. There were more coffins in this than in either of the other two, for several of the oldest (with the names of Halstead and Chamberlain on them, families who had the estate before the Rich family settled in Sonning) had been displaced, and the outer wood coffins having perished, the lead coffins, in some cases made in the shape of the body, were ranged upright against the wall. The effect was most singular, as they looked like Egyptian mummies. Though no interment can again take place either in this or the Blagrave vault, we did not fill them up with earth, but only closed them securely.


From Hugh Pearson’s “Memorials of the Church and Parish of Sonning” (1890)


    © Nash Ford Publishing 2001. All Rights Reserved.