Holloway, Malmesbury, United Kingdom
Malmesbury Abbey Reviews
Malmesbury Abbey Jan 17, 2009
Malmesbury Abbey must have been huge in its day. Now, all that is left is an unusually large church with an enormous arch leading to nothing round the side.
Malmesbury abbey was founded very early on, and was well established by 800. About then, give or take a century, Alfred the Great's (him with the burnt cakes) grandon Athelstan, presumably being more competent at both warcraft and cooking, unified England.
And for some reason never quite explained he fell in love with Malmesbury and wanted buried in the Abbey, which promptly got even better known. The current building is about 12th century.
In its current form, it's a surprisingly large church with a great big arch out the back, attached to nothing. In its day, it must have been absolutely enormous, but there isn't much to see today. perfect, in fact, for a half hour walk on your way to purchase a ham hock. There is some fascinating carving, especially around the door. Little of it has survived the last 900 years totally intact, and the dissolution of the monnasteries and reformation means that most of the angels were beheaded. Some, however, survived - the locals must have just plastered over them - and the inside of the porch has some great little saints and prophets. The roof bosses are pretty cool too. There is also a window by William Morris and Co, which is just after Morris's death and so done to his designs.
Disabled access would probably be fine.
Part of the 2009 at last travel blog
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