The Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological
Trust Historic Environment Record
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ST MARY'S PRIORY, ABERGAVENNY
Primary Reference Number (PRN) : 01325g Trust : Glamorgan Gwent Community : Abergavenny Unitary authority : Monmouthshire NGR : SO30131411 Site Type (preferred type first) : Medieval Priory Status : Scheduled Monument
Summary : Benedictine priory (of conventual status), founded 1087-1100. The only surviving part of the claustral buildings is a single 14th century wall running eastwards from the southeast corner of the south transept and now forming part of the parish centre. The associated Tithe barn, which retains inserted 18th century round windows, has been restored and converted as a part of the community centre.
Description : The Priory Church is now used as the parish church, St Marys. The site of Priory House (converted from the monastic buildings and later demolished in 1953) has recently been redeveloped as the Priory centre. The associated Tithe barn, which retains inserted 18th century round windows, has been restored and converted as a part of the community centre (Bowden and Roberts 2012).
Benedictine priory (of conventual status), founded 1087-1100 as a daughter house of St Vincent, Le Mans, by Hamelin of Ballon, Lord of Abergavenny. Seized as an alien priory in 1294, and dissolved in 1536 when the priory church (PRN 02338g) was acquired by the townspeople as a parish church. The only surviving part of the claustral buildings is a single wall running southwards from the southeast corner of the south transept and now forming part of the parish centre. In the 18th century this was incorporated into the mansion known as Priory House. The wing of which it formed a part was later known as the Old Chapter House, and was used as a schoolroom in the first half of the 20th century. The surviving wall, which was recorded during the construction of the parish centre, is of 14th century date. It retains an arched opening with sandstone dressings and the remains of a cusp, possibly the remains of a three-hight window with traceried head; this is situated a short distance north of the middle of the wall. At the south end are traces of a doorway, which is thought to have given access to a slype between the west and south ranges. In spite of the traditional name, it is more likely that this wall was originally part of the dorter block. (Evans 2010)
A fabric analysis and interpretaion of the East Claustral Range conducted in 2000 recorded the existence of a slype that gave access to the cloister and confirmed the existence of a building, likely a monk's reredorter (Jones 2000).
Blockley, K , 1999 , St Mary's Priory, Abergavenny - South Claustral Range, Archaeological watching brief
Bowden, R. and Roberts, R. , 2012 , Monastic Sites in Glamorgan and Gwent
Jones, R S , 2000 , St Mary's Priory, Abergavenny: Fabric analysis and interpretation of east claustral range
04/MM Desc Text/Cadw/1992/AM107
02/PM Desc Text/OWen E/1900/Arch Camb volXVIII 5th series noLXVII p294
05/PM Article/3.7.96/Abergavenny Chronicle
01/PM Record Card/OS/1957/SO 31 SW 1
ARCHAEOLOGICAL EXCAVATION HERBERT CHAPEL, ST MARY'S PRIORY
03/MM Desc Text/Cadw/Whittle E/1987/AM107
ARCHAEOLOGICAL EXCAVATION HERBERT CHAPEL, ST MARY'S PRIORY CHURCH ABERGAVENNY A208 REPORT NO. 94/060
Events : E002129 : Excavations at St Mary's Priory, Abergavenny (year : 2009-10) E002130 : Field visit to St Mary's Priory (year : 2011) E002119 : Assessment of Monastic Sites in Glamorgan and Gwent (year : 2012) E002235 : Saint Mary's Priory, Abergavenny, EVAL (year : 1995) E002236 : St Mary's Priory Church, Abergavenny, EVAL (year : 1998) E002237 : Herbert Chapel, Monmouthshire, EXCAV (year : 1996) E002457 : St Mary's Priory, Abergavenny WB (year : 1999) E002568 : St. Mary's Priory Abergavenny, East Claustral Range SUR (year : 2000) E002636 : Abergavenny, Desktop Historic Landscape Study. DBA (year : 1998)