Llanthony Priory is a partly ruined former Augustinian priory in the secluded
Vale of Ewyas, a steep sided once glaciated valley within the Black Mountains,
area of the
in Monmouthshire south east Brecon Beacons National Park . It lies seven miles north of Abergavenny on an old road to Hay on Wye at Llanthony .The main ruins are under the care of http://www.cadw.wales.gov.uk/ Wales
This foundation was reportedly begun towards the end of the 11th century when a knight was 'converted' after sheltering from a storm in a ruined chapel on the site, and led the life of a hermit for several years.
Eventually he was joined by a priest and a group of canons, and Llanthony Priory was established. In 1135, following a Welsh national rising, the canons had to leave their house at Llanthony, and took refuge in the Bishop's palace at
Hereford while a new site was found for them outside of , called Llanthony Secunda. Gloucester
A large section of the north aisle arcade stands to full height, and there is even some of the original vaulting to be seen. Two walls of the crossing tower, showing their rounded window arches, survive almost untouched, and a good section of the south transept retains much of its detail.
Little survives of the claustral buildings, and part of the original prior's house was remodelled, along with the south west tower, to form the basis of accommodation for the present hotel. http://www.llanthonyprioryhotel.co.uk/
However, at the north end of this range is the vaulted outer parlour, and just south of this are three stone-vaulted undercrofts - one of which has been delightfully transformed into the hotel's cellar bar.
The 13th century parish
, on the opposite side of the car park to the priory ruins, is believed to have been the infirmary chapel although, because of extensive alteration over the centuries, there is no real evidence to substantiate this. Immediately before the car park entrance, there are fragments of Llanthony Priory gatehouse just visible amongst the undergrowth and farm outbuildings. church of St Mary
The solitude and beauty of Llanthony Priory is captured by the fabulously wild countryside encompassing it, and the dramatic mountainous backdrop providing a wonderful sense of perspective. This is a romantic and magical setting where it is still possible to shut out the intrusive ways of the 21st century and simply unwind in the absolute peace and tranquility of these haunting monastic ruins.
Thanks to my dear friend Stew Maw,
I was privileged to see this unique place.