Cirencester Abbey Grounds, Cirencester

4.6
#5 of 9 in Outdoors in Cirencester
Cirencester Abbey or St Mary's Abbey, Cirencester in Gloucestershire was founded as an Augustinian monastery in 1117 on the site of an earlier church, the oldest-known Saxon church in England, which had itself been built on the site of a Roman structure. The church was greatly enlarged in the 14th century with addition of an ambulatory to the east end. The abbot became mitred 1416. The monastery was suppressed in 1539 and presented to Roger Bassinge.
In the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, the abbey fostered the successful writers Robert of Cricklade and Alexander Neckam. They were supported in their work by other canons, including Walter of Mileto and Alexander's nephew Geoffrey Brito.
A house called Abbey House was built on the site in the late 16th century, remodelled in the 1780s, and then demolished in 1964 to be replaced by a block of flats. The area that contained the nucleus of the monastery is now a public park, and only the Norman Arch, an original gateway to the abbey, and parts of the precinct wall remain above ground.
The impressive and substantial three-storey porch of the parish church was built as an administrative building of the abbey and after 1539 the upper levels were used for some time as the town hall. The church itself is a relic and product of a long-standing feud between the townspeople and the abbey. The latter, who were responsible for the chancel of the parish church have left us with a plain and unadorned building. The townspeople however were responsible for the remainder, and rebuilt the nave and west tower in an impressive style so as to far out-do the canons and at least win in a war of architecture if nothing else.
Using our custom trip planner, Cirencester attractions like Cirencester Abbey Grounds can form part of a personalized travel itinerary.
Source
map
© OpenMapTiles © OpenStreetMap contributors
Create an itinerary including Cirencester Abbey Grounds
Save Saved
Cirencester Abbey Grounds Reviews
Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
26 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • There isn't much left of the old abbey, but the nearby church is just wonderful. There are the remains of the Roman town wall and also a really interesting Norman Gatehouse. There are wide open areas ...  more »
  • Situated behind the church. Great place for dog walking, fishing, sitting and a play park for the kids. Norman arch and bandstand.  more »
  • Build a plan

    Tell us where and when you
    want to go, we will build
    the best sightseeing itinerary
  • Refine it

    You have complete flexibility on your destinations and itinerary
  • Book as a package

    Use our travel agents to get
    package savings and hassle free booking
  • Enjoy your trip!

    Enjoy our 24x7
    on-trip assistance

Popular things to do in Cirencester

View all >
4.9
Duration: 2​h
4.6
Duration: 2​h
4.8
Duration: 1​h 30​min
4.8
Duration: 3​h

Side trips from Cirencester

3.9
Duration: 4​h
4.7
Duration: 2​h 30​min
4.6
Duration: 4​h
4.7
Duration: 4​h

Parks in Cirencester

4.4
Duration: 1​h 30​min
2.5
Duration: 4​h
4.2
Duration: 2​h

Shopping in Cirencester

5.0
Duration: 1​h
5.0
Duration: 1​h
4.3
Duration: 1​h 30​min
4.9
Duration: 30​min

Nearby attractions in Cirencester

4.9
Duration: 2​h 30​min
5.0
Duration: 1​h 30​min
5.0
Duration: 4​h
5.0
Duration: 2​h 30​min

Hidden gems in Cirencester

4.6
Duration: 1​h 30​min