Hartland Abbey and Gardens
Devon, EX39 6DT
Hartland Abbey lies across a narrow, sheltered valley which winds its way to the spectacular Atlantic Coast.
The Abbey is located within a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and visitors may wander around the beautiful gardens and grounds which lead to the rocky cove. Peacocks and guinea fowl roam at will, while donkeys and Black Welsh Mountain sheep graze the Old Deer Park.
The story of the Abbey mirrors local and national history at every turn. Built in 1149, it was given by Henry VIII to the Keeper of his Wine cellar. Remaining as a monastery for 400 years and passing through the female line three times, it has never been sold. Consequently, it has a friendly and lived-in atmosphere, so often absent in many historic houses.
The Abbey contains collections of pictures, furniture and porcelain and family memorabilia that have accumulated over many generations. The antiquarian William Stukeley was one of the family ancestors, and there is a permanent display of his work.