- Pershore Abbey
Pershore Abbey, at
Pershorein Worcestershire, was an Anglo-Saxon abbeyand is now an Anglican parish church.
Between AD 681 and 689, King
Æthelred of Merciagave estates at Pershore to the Bishop of Worcesterfor the purposes of establishing a monastery. A monastic community was established at Pershore by 689.
The Abbey came under the
Benedictinerule in about the 10th century. It was originally dedicated to Saint Mary the Virgin, Saint Peterand Saint Paul, and later to Saint Maryand Saint Eadburga. The main building was begun in about 1100. The abbey was dissolved in 1539. A monk of Pershore, named Richard Beerely, was one of those who gave evidence to Thomas Cromwellabout the misbehaviour of some of his brothers, writing that "Monckes drynk an bowll after collacyon tell ten or xii of the clock, and cum to mattens as dronck as myss, and sume at cardes, sume at dyss."
The abbey church remained in use as a
parish church. When the north transeptcollapsed in 1686, a wall was built in its place. Further alterations were carried out, including a restoration by George Gilbert Scottin 1852.
In 1913, two western buttresses were added to replace the support from the missing portion of the building.
Current structure and features
The church as it now stands represents only a small portion of the original building.
Pershore Abbey has a 25 cwt ring of eight bells. The ringing room is a metal 'cage' suspended high above the chancel crossing; it is accessed by means of two stone spiral staircases, a walkway through the roof, a squeeze through a narrow passage and a see-through iron staircase.
* [http://www.pershoreabbey.org.uk/ Pershore Abbey Website]
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