With 1300 years of history, the first King of England buried somewhere in the garden, two saints thrown down the well, and now one of the great gardens of the world. The spirit of the place shines through and could be the best garden visit you ever make.
1st April - 31st October
We offer a discount price of £6.00 for groups of 12 or more, as well as the option of an introductory talk or full house and garden tour.
Contact us for more details.
We are now open for the Season as of June 1st 2020!
5 acres to maintain a safe social distance. No need to Pre-book tickets.
Cotswold Sculpture Exhibition until the end of the season, over 100 pieces.
Indoor Exhibition Open from August 1st 2020.
All dogs welcome on a short lead!
Please see our Facebook for the latest news.
The Coy Carp Café provides a beautiful spot to enjoy tea, or a scrumptious lunch where you can watch, and feed, an extensive collection of koi carp in The Stew Pond.
We specialise in bespoke wedding venues ranging from intimate ceremonies involving just you and your witnesses to parties of up to 170. We offer flexible options to tailor-make the perfect day to reflect your individual style, size and budget. Whether you require just a ceremony, reception or both, with our expertise and friendly service, we can guide and assist as much or as little as you wish.
Malmesbury's hill-top has been inhabited for centuries. Evidence of an Iron Age fort was uncovered in 1999. Material from the excavation of a coffin found in the grounds of The Abbey House in 1997 is the first recorded evidence that the Romans were in Malmesbury.
A religious site was established by Maelduf around 642, and his pupil Aldhelm became the first abbot of the Benedictine Monastery in 675. Athelstan, Alfred's grandson and the first king of all England- crowned at Kingston - was buried at Malmesbury Abbey in 935. William of Malmesbury writes 200 years later that Athelstan's body was removed from The Abbey and placed in the Abbot's garden to avoid Norman desecration.
By the 12th century the current Abbey was completed and enjoying its status as the third most important religious centre in England after Canterbury and Winchester. With the arrival of Abbot William of Colerne in 1260 a building programme began, which included the new Lady Chapel, a new shrine to St. Aldhelm, and a new Abbot's lodging with herbarium and vinery – now Abbey House. The garden walks and yew hedging in the upper garden you see today, have all been laid out and positioned to replicate the exact footprint of the missing parts of the original Abbey, and the Lady Chapel, which extended in its heyday far beyond its current footprint.
Just before the Dissolution of the Monasteries, the Lady Chapel was severely damaged when the Abbey spire fell around 1500. William of Worcester recorded the spire as 431 ft. high. 28 ft. taller than Salisbury Cathedral's spire and six times higher than the remaining ruined arch today.
Malmesbury Abbey was one of the last Monasteries to close during the Dissolution in 1539. William Stumpe, a wealthy clothier, bought numerous properties from Henry Vlll including Abbey House and was instrumental in the acquisition of the Abbey building itself for the people of the town to use as their Parish Church. William built the central part of the house you see today after 1542 using the 13th century former Abbot's House as it's foundations.
During the English Civil War strategically important Malmesbury changed hands six times. A painting called the 'Bird's Eye View' of 1648, lists The Abbey House as Mr. Ivey's house but it was used a Governor's residence during the war.
We'd love to hear from you.
No need to pre-book for garden visit. 5 acres to safely socially distance!
Abbey House Gardens offer a beautiful venue for your special day. We have hosted ambitious 200 plus guest weddings in marquees across the upper lawns, to intimate weddings in the panelled library. We offer bespokse packages for wedding ceremonies and receptions, allowing you access and use of all the amenities that we have to offer.
For full details, please see our wedding brochure or feel free to call us on 01666 827650 Or 07795418197 to discuss your specific requirements, and of course, do come and visit us to see what we have to offer.
The Gardens at Abbey House, and our covered Belvedere offer a great place to host your birthday, children's parties, office and Christmas parties, and Burns Night celebrations … the possibilities are endless.
We are fully licensed and have a kitchen for catering, as well as space for outside caterers to set up. Access to the gardens provides an added dimension and opportunities for themed parties – last year we hosted an Alice in Wonderland party and the grounds make a great place for children to play, and run and hide!
Looking to escape the office? Seek refuge in the gardens or house to talk privately with clients, deliver presentations to larger groups, or just enjoy a day out. We can deliver and cater for all options.
The historic Abbey House offers a variety of spaces for hosting your meetings and presentations. From the spacious library where up to 60 people can comfortably be accommodated, to the medieval undercroft for a more intimate, and unusual meeting venue where up to 10 people can be seated.
We will provide the tea and coffee, and lunch if required. We are very flexible and will be happy to talk through your ideas for your next office meeting, or presentation.
Interested in hosting your own class? Please contact us.
Having held sculpture exhibitions for many years, the Abbey House Gardens invite artists of all varieties to use the space to display their work, from public open air events to private displays in the belvedere.
We would love to be able to host your next art exhibition – however big or small, please contact us.