Bit of a spur of the moment one this, I stopped off here on the evening before i visited the coke works, i have decided to put all 3 locations in to one report as they are all connected and close to each other. Just as i got to the top of the hill for the church i realised i was missing my tripod, so had to shoot the church and hotel hand held, think i just about got away with it. Sadly the hotel has seen better days. I went back for it for the night shots of the Abbey as some exposures were up to 3 mins long and my hands aren't that steady.
St Mary's Church
St Mary’s church dates back well into medieval times. It stands on the site of a medieval chapel that was built as a retreat for the monks of Tintern Abbey. It was virtually rebuilt in 1866-1868 and remained to be a parish church until 1972. Now there are stories about witchcraft, black magic and satanic rituals causing its destruction, but truth be known, it was no more than a tragic accident. The church was destroyed by fire in 1977.
The tomb was originally believed to be that of Robert Thompson (1757-1821) who married into the Crawshay dynasty, in Merthyr Tydfil in 1790 and his wife Elizabeth who was the sister of Richard Crawshay. Elizabeth and Robert, who was also High Sheriff of Monmouthshire in 1817 and held the lease for the Tintern wireworks, were both buried at St Mary’s Churchyard. However, after extensive research and an examination of the eroded inscription on the cast plates the tomb is believed to belong to Richard White, a wealthy ironworks leaseholder who died in 1765.
The sarcophagus tomb is special because it is one of the earliest monuments to be listed and protected
The Abbey at Night
Tintern Abbey was originally founded by Cistercian monks in 1131 AD. in the reign of Henry I. Between 1270 and 1301 the Abbey was rebuilt and by the end of the rebuilding, around four hundred monks lived in the complex. The Black Death arrived in 1349 and affected Abbey life badly but it continued to operate until 1536. In that year the Abbey was part of the dissolution of the monasteries under Henry VIII. Within a few years the lead was stripped from the roof and the building began to decay. The Abbey then became a source of building stone and only in the eighteenth century was any interest shown in the ruin. Around 1760 the site was cleaned up and visitors to the Wye Valley began to be entranced with the beauty of the site and surroundings.
The Abbey Hotel
Parts of the The Abbey Hotel former Beaufort Arms Hotel date back to 1206 when it was inside the original precinct wall of the Abbey (owned by the Duke of Beaufort before Crown ownership from 1901). The earliest trade directory in which it was listed as a hotel was 1835, when it was known as the Beaufort Arms Hotel. The landlord at that time was for many years recorded as being the key holder and official guide to the Abbey. In 2002 the hotel was completely refurbished and renamed the Abbey Hotel.
The hotel appears to retain at least one early structure of probable medieval date, the northernmost of the two linear east-west aligned ranges depicted on the First Edition OS map of 1881.
The view of the Abbey from one of the upstairs bedroom windows