Malmesbury was founded very early, in 676 by St. Aldhelm. It became famous for it's learning and prospered under King Athelstan. The Danes sacked the Abbey in the 11th century.
It was then rebuilt around 1143 and became a Benedictine Abbey. The core of the Abbey became the parish church after the Dissolution during which time the main crossing tower collapsed.
Malmesbury is one of the most spectacular of West Country Abbeys and although in use as a church to this day is worth a look, if nothing else because it must once have been a huge building indeed.
Photo - Andrew J. Müller
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