John Thomas Micklethwaite
Born: 03 May, 1843
Died: 28 Oct, 1906
Field: Architect
Location in the Abbey: Cloisters, west cloister
Type of memorial: Grave

John Thomas Micklethwaite, architect and archaeologist and Surveyor of the Fabric of Westminster Abbey 1898-1906, is buried in the west cloister of the Abbey. His gravestone shows his coat of arms and the inscription:

"J. T. Micklethwaite

Surveyor of the Fabric

Born 3 May 1843

Died 28 Oct 1906"

He was born in Wakefield in Yorkshire a son of James Micklethwaite, a colliery owner, and his wife Sarah (Stanway). His childhood was spent at Hopton Hall, where the family had lived for more than two hundred years. He attended King's College London and in 1862 was articled to George Gilbert Scott, the famous Victorian architect. In partnership with Somers Clarke he designed several churches and restored others. At the Abbey he succeeded J.L.Pearson as Surveyor and devoted himself to the preservation of the fabric of the Abbey and its buildings and published several articles. For the coronation of Edward VII in 1902 he designed the Abbey frontal and copes and the new altar in St Edward the Confessor's chapel. In 1900 he was also made architect to St George's chapel, Windsor. He died unmarried. At the funeral the Dean of Westminster said of him "... he gave his whole heart to this place, and jealously guarded every fragment that could tell of its long history". His sister Ada gave money to set up an Abbey Museum in the monastic Undercroft in 1908.


Photos of the illustrations on this page can be purchased from Westminster Abbey Library.

Further reading:

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography 2004

"Surveyors of the Fabric of Westminster Abey 1827-1906. Reports & Letters" edited by Christine Reynolds (2011).

The late John Thomas Micklethwaite F.S.A. by W.Niven, 1907.

Click on the images to enlarge

Micklethwaite grave

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