A stunning, Augustinian monastery built in 1169, Lanercost Priory is now survived by St Mary Magdalene Church, and it lies in North Cumbria, very near to Hadrian’s Wall. The Priory survives today only by its original foundations as Henry VIII dissolved it during his dissolution of monasteries in 1536, since then it has gone under numerous major restorations. It is set downstream from Birdoswald Roman Fort, in the valley of the River Irthing, open every day, the Priory Church is free entry but any donations are kindly welcomed. To this day the Priory has a usual congregation of around 35-50 people for services most Sundays. Special services like christenings, weddings and funerals are also available. The ruins at the Priory are maintained and guarded by the English Heritage, open for the public to explore. One of the ruins is the original gateway to the monastery, only the ruins of the inner archway remain, but you can still get a sense of the grandeur that once was.
Close by are Lanercost cottages and other accommodations, a nearby b&b in Abbey farm as well as a tearoom, farm shop and gift shop all make this a pleasant place to stop and rest if you are walking Hadrian’s Wall or even just briefly exploring the region. Right next to Hadrian’s Wall and a wealth of scenic prettiness, we highly recommend spending some time at Lanercost Priory.