WILMINGTON Priory dating back to the 13th century is being opened to the public for a few days as part of the nationwide Heritage Open Days weekend.
The Landmark Trust, a building preservation charity, will host free open days at the historic site from 10am - 4pm, September 9 to 12 and also 10am to 1pm on September 13.
Each open day gives people an opportunity to see inside the building and learn more about its history.
The structure has been added to and altered over its long history, some of it has been lost to ruin and decay, but what is left shows how important it must once have been. There are ruined walls, an underground crypt and an ancient roof structure open to the trusses. Restoration of the building was completed in 2000 and Wilmington Priory has been open as a landmark for six people since then.
Wilmington Priory was founded by Herluin de Conteville and his wife Arlette, the mother of William the Conqueror, which lent it considerable prestige. It was never a conventional priory with cloister and chapter. The monks prayed in the adjoining parish church where the thousand-year old yews are testimony to the age of the site.
All are welcome to attend these open days and look around this beautiful historic building and landscape. There is no need to book.
A free information leaflet will be available which explains the building’s history and restoration. For directions please contact the Landmark Trust on 01628 825925. (Booking Office opens Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm and Saturday, 10am to 4pm)
The restoration of Wilmington Priory was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.