17 September @ 11:00 am – 4:00 pm | FREE Enjoy a guided tour of the remains of this important monastic site, nestled in a beautiful rural location in the Blackdown Hills. Find out about the resourcefulness of the Cistercians and discover why they choose this rural site to build their abbey. There will be tours at 11am, 1pm and 3pm. The Abbey was founded in 1201 by William Brewere as a colony of the mother house of Forde Abbey in Dorset. By the time of its dissolution in 1539, it had a substantial estate and was a major monastic house. Today, only the gatehouse and fragments of the west range survive. Discover what Dunkeswell Abbey would have looked like and what life was like for the Cistercian monks who lived there. Water management was vital to the survival and self-sufficiency of the monastic community and the Cistercians were experts…
In memory of Elizabeth II, there is a memorial book in the Church for anyone who would like to put their signature and any memories of the Queen they may have and would like to share. The book, loose leaved, will later be combined with the book from the Church of St Nicholas, Dunkeswell, and other church’s memorial books and be sent to the palace
Dunkeswell Abbey was featured on BBC Local News today, as part of an article covering sites being added to and removed from the “At Risk” register, maintained by Historic England. From the BBC Article: Dunkeswell Abbey was built in the 13th Century at the heart of the Blackdown Hills in Devon and has been removed from the register thanks to the help of volunteers. The ancient monument was placed on the register due to problems with its masonry, as well damage caused by vegetation.
Holy Trinity Church is on the ‘At Risk’ Register mainly due to the interior condition of the church. The roof was replaced in recent years which has allowed the north wall to dry out and considerable lime plaster has become detached. Supported by the Architectural Heritage Fund (AHF) and being carried out by Heritage Arts People (HAP) we are currently formulating a business plan which will cover remedial works over a period of time. It is hoped to be able to provide an Information Centre for the Ruins as one of the community uses for the church if we can generate funding. We will continue to consult with Historic England as this project progresses
We are being asked whether we will be having a Carol Service this year and we are looking to see what can be done. It was always lovely to see the involvement of the children – setting out the candles on the path to the church, decorating the church and of course the readings and carols. Watch this space!
Lots of positive comments have been received for the efforts made to clear the weeds from the walls and uncover the footprint of the Abbey. Also, a big ‘Thank You’ to Roger Beaver for tending the grounds for us.