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Tours > Monastic Yorkshire > Byland Abbey

Byland Abbey - Cistercian Monks 1147
Six miles north of Easingwold

Byland Abbey Byland Abbey is but two miles to the south of Rievaulx, making it very easy to visit both together. It is a warm and inviting honey-coloured building, with an outstanding western front which shoots into the sky to reveal the curve of the abbey's, once great, rose window. Miraculously, enough fragments have recently been pieced together for this medieval masterpiece to be graphically reconstructed. The rest of the church remains are the opposite of its counterpart across the Moors: aisle walls, but no supporting columns or clerestory. A remarkable survival are its floor tiles which fit together to form the most intricate patterns. Further refinements are in evidence in the little museum where an interesting carved lectern base is on display.

The stars of the associated buildings are a series of excellently preserved stone staircases. The semi-circular night-stairs up from the cloister are especially elegant. It's also nice to see the fireplace remaining in the warming house. Just imagine the furnace you could build up in that.

The site is run by English Heritage. There is an entry fee, though Free admission to members.

Next Stop: Kirkham Priory



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