- Launde Abbey
Launde Abbey is located in
Leicestershire, 14 miles east of the city of Leicesterand 6 miles southwest of Oakham. The building is presently used as a Conference and Retreat Centre, by the Church of England Diocese of Leicester.
The Abbey is an
ElizabethanManor House, extensively modified, originally built on the site of an Augustinian Priory. The original priory was founded in 1119.
Launde is set in beautiful countryside.
Thomas Cromwell, Henry VIII's chief minister responsible for the dissolution of the monasteries, so liked its position that he wrote in his diary- "Myself for Launde". But Cromwell never occupied the house as he was executed in 1540for treason. In that same the year the building of the new house commenced. His son, Gregory, lived at Launde Abbey for ten years after its construction with his wife Elizabeth, the sister of Queen Jane Seymour.
The chapel is thought to be all that remains of the original Priory Church. Some of its stained glass is mediaeval and
Nikolaus Pevsnerhas described the monument to Gregory Cromwell as "one of the purest monuments of the early Renaissance in England".
The Chapel is used for daily worship by the resident community and guests, and is a great attraction for visitors.
The Abbey's history and nature is chronicled by The Very Reverend John Chester Hughes, in "Launde Abbey", published in 1998.
* [http://www.launde.org.uk/ Launde Abbey website]
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