Ewenny Priory

Bridgend, United Kingdom

Ewenny Priory was a monastery of the Benedictine order, founded in the 12th century. The priory was unusual in having military-style defences and is widely regarded as one of the finest fortified religious buildings in Britain. Over the centuries the priory has sustained some damage, and following the Dissolution of the Monasteries, was, like many of its kind, converted into a private house, Ewenny Priory House, which is still inhabited by its current owners, the Turbervill family. The priory is not open to the public apart from the church, where restoration work has been carried out by Cadw. The nave serves as the parish church.

The priory was founded in 1141 by Maurice de Londres when he granted the nearby Norman church of St. Michael to the abbey of St. Peter at Gloucester (now Gloucester cathedral). The church had been built in the 12th century by his father, William de Londres, one of the Norman knights of Glamorgan. The village of Ewenny grew around the Priory and church.

The priory was dissolved in 1536, and leased in the same year to Sir Edward Carne. In 1545 he purchased the priory, along with its possessions. The estate descended in the Carne family to Edward Carne (died 1650) who was succeeded by his two daughters and co-heirs, Blanche and Martha. Blanche (d 1685) inherited Ewenny, and married her cousin Colonel Sir John Carne (died 1682), of Corntown, near Bridgend. Their son Richard Carne (c.1669-1713) of Ewenny was succeeded by his two sisters and co-heirs, Frances (d 1714) the wife of Edward Turbervill of Sutton, and Jane (d 1741). Edward and Frances Turbervill were succeeded by their son Richard Turbervill, who became the sole owner of the Ewenny estate on the death of his aunt Jane in 1741.

From Richard the estate descended to Richard Turbervill Picton, who changed his name to Richard Turbervill Turbervill and died in 1819. He was succeeded by his son Richard Turvervill Turbervill (d 1848), who was succeeded in turn by his brother Colonel Gervase Powell Turberville, who died childless c.1862. The estate then passed to his great-nephew Lieutenant-Colonel Thomas Picton-Warlow (died 1892), who changed his name to Thomas Picton-Turbervill in 1867 and from him passed down in the Picton-Turbervill family for several generations.



Your name


Founded: 1141
Category: Religious sites in United Kingdom

More Information



4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Marianne Skinner (10 months ago)
Such an interesting place, pity so much of it has disappeared or is in private ownership, ghe Church is well worth a visit and you can access the monastic areas behind the altar. It is well worth buying the little guidebook available there
Jess (12 months ago)
So lovely to visit and find the house and grounds open too. I have never been in the grounds or The Priory before. Well worth a visit when they next have an open day. You don't need tickets and it's free entry.
Brian Morgan (12 months ago)
A place of quiet contemplation that in times past was an important part of life in the area. Although the priory is a ruin, the associated church contains information of historical interest. Free to visit but no onsite amenities although these are available close by.
Pete Phillips (13 months ago)
Amazing venue. Our daughter's wedding celebration was held here. Really beautiful and scenic location (assuming good weather). Loads of room for marquees, good parking. We couldn't have wished for a better location.
Cymru Jon (15 months ago)
Interesting place to visit, if you are in the Bridgend area, car parking and entry is free. Ewenny Priory dates back to the 12th century and there are various remains to look at including the walls and gatehouse. The church is architecturally intesting and is still in use as the parish church. We also enjoyed the grounds and deer walk. Unusually for a Cadw property signage isn't great and it's hard to work out which areas are private.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Topography of Terror

The Topography of Terror (Topographie des Terrors) is an outdoor and indoor history museum. It is located on Niederkirchnerstrasse, formerly Prinz-Albrecht-Strasse, on the site of buildings which during the Nazi regime from 1933 to 1945 were the headquarters of the Gestapo and the SS, the principal instruments of repression during the Nazi era.

The buildings that housed the Gestapo and SS headquarters were largely destroyed by Allied bombing during early 1945 and the ruins demolished after the war. The boundary between the American and Soviet zones of occupation in Berlin ran along the Prinz-Albrecht-Strasse, so the street soon became a fortified boundary, and the Berlin Wall ran along the south side of the street, renamed Niederkirchnerstrasse, from 1961 to 1989. The wall here was never demolished.