Lancashires abundant Abbeys...

by Sally Jacobs February. 15, 2017 579 views

I feel privileged to be able to walk around freely at these wonderful sites in Lancashire, this abbey being Sawley abbey which was a Cistercian abbey and founded in 1148 by William de Percy II son of Alan Percy the Great, when Abbot Benedict with twelve monks and ten conversi came from Newminster. 

Swain the son of Swain had sold to Robert Abbot of Newminster 11 carucates in 'Sallaia' and land and wood beyond Suaneside and Cliderow and there the abbey was built to the traditional Cistercian plan, with the abbey church forming the north range of the cloisters, lay brother's quarters on the west range, an east range featuring the chapter house and monk's quarters, and further domestic buildings on the south range. 

After its dissolution in 1536, the monks briefly returned to the abbey during the Pilgrimage of Grace. They remained in possession until the insurrection's collapse and the execution of their abbot. 

The king (Henry VIII) was enraged by the monk's determination and sent a force under the Earl of Derby to deal with Sawley. Abbot William Traford was executed for treason, and the monks then left Sawley for good.

Sawley Abbey is located in the Ribble Valley 6km north east of Clitheroe and was dedicated to St Mary and St Andrew. It is constructed in a combination of dressed sandstone and black shale.

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