Barrow-in-Furness, South Lakes
Details for Furness Abbey
Furness Abbey is an English Heritage visitor site which is home to the impressive sandstone ruins of the Abbey. There is an interesting museum and shop on site where visitors can find lots of information about the turbulent history of the building, the local inhabitants, and relics from the original buildings.
Situated on the ancient Cistercian Way, close to Barrow-in-Furness are the spectacular ruins of Furness Abbey. The original and quite traditional abbey was built out of locally mined, warm red sandstone way back in the eleventh century. It was later extended by the Cistercian order, becoming much larger, more ornate and extremely grand by the time it was completed in the fifteenth century.
The monks who inhabited the abbey were very wealthy and owned large areas of land both on mainland Britain and on the Isle-of-Man, where they also owned some of the mines. Amongst the burial sites there are a number of Bishops, dignitaries and a king buried at the abbey.
The abbey has had a long and chequered history and has seen many changes throughout the centuries, including the wars between the English and the Scots which resulted in Robert the Bruce once staying for a period here. Henry VIII ordered the disestablishment of Furness Abbey which was then destroyed in 1537.
The ruins have now become a well visited tourist site and have attracted hundreds of visitors over the years, including President Theodore Roosevelt and his family, the artist Turner, and the famous poet Wordsworth who gained inspiration from these atmospheric surroundings.
Local tales, myths and folklore surround the abbey, and particularly refer to the time around the Reformation when tragedy and torture was commonplace. It is widely believed that the abbey is now haunted by several...
There is also believed to be the ghost of a white lady who walks along the path to the abbey known as My Lady's Walk, and a monk whom it is said appears on the banister to the old staircase, and was the victim of a brutal murder.
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