According to the Historic England website, the Abbey was a Benedictine monastery,
established between 675AD and 705AD and has a written history covering 1300 years. It is
still very much a place of worship, and when not being used for this purpose it is open to the
Inside, the Abbey feels very 'grand' - you know you are somewhere important to history. The
atmosphere is welcoming and serene. What is left of the original building is still
impressive. If you have the change to visit the Abbey, just sit for a while look around -
there is so much to see and as you look you notice more and more. Carvings adorn the walls
and arches, there is a passage hidden half way up a wall, memorials that are hundreds of years old
and some beautiful windows to admire. One particular feature we found fascinating are the
bosses in the ceiling - normally they are too high up to see in any detail, but with the aid of the
camera's zoom lens, we can see more of them (although the quality of the photographs suffered as a
result of using the zoom). There are a couple of these stones at ground level and they are
much bigger than we expected - it must have been quite a feat to have placed them so high up.
There is a mirror at ground level to help you see the bosses without having to look up and strain
The staff - members and friends - at the Abbey are always available to answer questions.
They obviously care a great deal about their building to give up their spare time to allow
visitors in when otherwise it would be closed to us. A couple of years ago we visited to
take some photographs for two people who knew their ancestors had memorials in the Abbey, but who
lived too far away to visit and the Abbey members/friends who were on duty at the time even went
to the bother of moving a large chest so we could photograph a brass plaque that it partly
covered. That's service for you!
A couple of websites that may be of interest to you: