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Leiston Abbey, Leiston

(3.6/5 based on 45+ reviews on the web)
Leiston Abbey, in Suffolk, England, was formerly known as St Mary's Abbey. It was founded in 1182 at Minsmere by Ranulf de Glanville, Lord Chief Justice to Henry II. The only remains of the old site are the ruins of the Abbey chapel.In 1363 the Abbey was transferred to Leiston, and its patron, Robert de Ufford, 1st Earl of Suffolk, devoted his last years to the building.RuinsThe order of the Abbey was a House of Augustinian Canons Regular who followed the Premonstratensian rule. Unlike monks, their main duties were preaching and pastoral work.GroundsFollowing the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1536, Leiston Abbey was granted to Charles Brandon, 3rd Duke of Suffolk and brother-in-law to Henry VIII. The Abbey became a farm, the farmhouse being built into the ruins. Later, a Georgian front was added to the house, which was extended in the 1920s.In 1928 the Abbey ruins and farm were bought by Ellen Wrightson for use as a religious retreat. When she died in 1946, she bequeathed the house, ruins, land and buildings to the Diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich. It was purchased in 1977 by the Pro Corda Trust and is managed by them; it is in the guardianship of English Heritage.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Quiet setting with a long history that continues today. Existing buildings are a music school and if you are lucky enough you'll be able to hear them playing whilst walking amongst the ruins.  more »
  • I have walked around the Abbey, and not learned very much about it, but it is a wonderful place to take photographs. Passed it regularly on my way to and from my camp site.  more »
  • The abbey, although being an English Heritage site, seems to be free to all. It is well worth a visit and in its peaceful setting is much larger than it first appears.  more »