This brings us to our first question, namely, did Sittingbourne exist before that time and if so, where was it? It has long been accepted the town grew from a small settlement that was located at the crossroads of what is now the High Street, Bell Road, East Street and Crown Quay Lane; St Michael’s church would seem to support this. According to Alan Abbey the churchyard was laid out and butted up to the existing road because the church and the yard are based around the ancient spring which is very close to the road. For the date the church was built you would expect it to be built on the other side of the road and given more room facing south. The site of the spring is key to understanding why the road is where it is and why the later church was built on the wrong side of the road.