Record Details

NHER Number:6278
Type of record:Monument
Name:All Saints' Church and ruins of Weybourne Priory of the Blessed Virgin and All Saints


The present church grew out of a 13th century Priory of Augustinian Canons, which itself took over the site and building of an earlier church. The impressive ruins of the early Norman tower remain to the north of the present chancel and much of the outline of the Priory can still be seen. The canons added a south aisle for parish use and the present north aisle stands on the foundations of the old nave. A handsome tower with nice sound holes and flushwork was added in the 15th century, as was the porch, which has good flint and brick chequerwork and had an upper chamber used as a chapel. The nave hammerbeam roof is of similar date. Inside is a Jacobean pulpit re-mounted on a plinth of 1888 and some early 16th century re-used poppyhead benches, one with a female head as an armrest, another with a bird. Ruins of the cloister and vaulted dark entry are in the neighbouring garden to the north.


  • All Saints' Church, Weybourne. Photograph from  © S. Knott


Grid Reference:TG 1113 4309
Map Sheet:TG14SW

Full description

Priory of Augustinian Canons.
Founded 1199-1216. Parish church; new enlarged south aisle. Tower and ruins of church; some buildings on north. Saxon work in tower. 1314 became priory cell. 1536 dissolved.

Saxon tower of priory; originally of parish church over chancel (though Pevsner (S1) says west of chancel). Dated about 950 to 1066; G.B. Brown dates to about 1050, by Whittingham (Barnack string course about 1050).
R.R. Clarke (NCM).

Ordnance Survey maps mark 'moat' as northern boundary. An 18th century barn said to contain timbers from the priory was demolished in 1967 and the wood used to build a house at Hawes Green, Shotesham (NHER 13184).

(S1) notes that the parish church is otherwise 13th to 15th century with plate as paten, London 1767, chalice London 1768.

(S2) notes stump of a cross near the tower.
Informant [1] notes a straight jamb in the tower above the west arch, below the roof and a west window.
(S3) dated it to 'C3' or 1050 to 1100.

The exact limits of the scheduled area are far from clear. As well as being scheduled, the following buildings are listed (S4).
Parish church grade II*, priory ruins grade I, Abbey Farmhouse (dated as 17th century extended early 19th century) grade II, barn to north dated 1671 grade II; both the latter built over priory foundations.
See (S4).

New schedule 1995 includes all of area including the ground beneath the above-mentioned buildings. See the schedule description in file for full analysis of ruins and of parish church.
See file for further details.
E. Rose (NLA), 1 September 1995.

War memorial in churchyard listed Grade II in 2001 (S4).
E. Rose (NLA), 20 April 2001.

August 2002.
Heavy ivy cover over much of the ruins. Some growing from the ground, but a great proportion sprouting from the masonry. Some areas of the ruins also masked by elder growing close to the walls. It is hoped to facilitate a Section 17 agreement to kill the ivy and cut the scrub, prior to examining the possiblity of a programme of consolidation.
H. Paterson (NLA), 27 August 2002.

Section 17 Management Agreement (S5) signed 24 October 2002.
See copy in office file.
H. Paterson (A&E), 31 October 2002.

The barn dated 1671 (or possibly 1677) according to architect, partly collapsed.
Information from North Norfolk District Council.
E. Rose (NLA), 11 December 2002.

May 2003. Trial Trenching.
NAU evaluation. Contexts 1 to 21 used.
Trench 1 was located in the ‘dark entry’ and revealed elements of a possible medieval floor below modern deposits of rubble from the priory buildings.
Trench 2 was located in the west cloister range that had been re-used as a cellar in the post medieval period. It contained a post medieval floor below modern deposits of rubble from the priory buildings.
See report (S6) for further details. The results of this work are also summarised in (S17).
M. Horlock (NLA), 6 August 2003.

See comments made at time of planning application for house and barn, including analysis by Norfolk County Council who say the date on the barn was 1699.
E. Rose (NLA), 11 July 2003.

July 2003.
Elder all cut at ground level. Much of the ivy on the fabric of the ruins cut and dying. Poison will be applied to any live ivy rooted in the masonry. Under management agreement.
H. Paterson (A&E), 14 July 2003.

Norfolk NMP. October 2003.
The walls, vegetation-covered wall footings and associated earthworks relating to Weybourne Priory are visible on aerial photographs (S7-S9). A series of fishponds and channels to the northeast of the site are also visible. The main concentration of structural remains and earthworks are located to the north and northeast of the Priory church and cloister. These consist of low vegetation covered wall footings and exposed stonework that follow the same alignment as the rest of the Priory buildings to the south. These are likely to be the remains of further ranges of buildings, possibly representing domestic, agricultural and service buildings additional to the main cloistral range. A number of the more southerly walls appear to correspond with structures marked on the Ordnance Survey second edition map that have since been removed. It is also possible that some represent the remains of garden walls and external divisions.

The most northernmost of the walls appears to join with a relatively major boundary that runs alongside the eastern extent of the site. To the north of the main structural remains is a large rectangular fishpond, 16.5m by 14.5m. The traces of two secondary ponds are also visible adjacent to this more major feature. A curvilinear hollow way approaches the site from the northwest. It is possible that this relates to the monastic site, although it is also possible that it relates to one of the later, post medieval phases at the site.
S. Massey (NMP), 09 October 2003.

February 2004.
A large proportion of the dense ivy growth has died, following cutting under Section 17 Agreement. Several stems still alive growing from the masonry at higher levels, especially on the dark entry. Chemical spraying will take place in the near future.
H. Paterson (A&E), 18 February 2004.

July 2004. NAU watching brief on floor lowering. Contexts 25 to 35.
Medieval anthropomorphic cowled figure carved within ashlar block in southwest door jam of walled courtyard, north range of outbuildings. Also, found by [2], head of medieval statue, possibly an angel, relatively unweathered.
J. Allen (NLA), 30 July 2004.

December 2004.
Scheduled monument consent granted concerning the digging of footings for a conservatory.
See (S10)
H. White (NLA), 6 March 2009

January 2005. Watching Brief.
NAU watching brief on services. Contexts 36 to 49 used.
Floor surfaces within the two rooms affected exhibited rubble infill, some of which was proven to be associated with the demolished priory building. A trench revealed the cellar wall and associated footing trench. This contained unstratified post medieval pottery as well as fragments of both animal and human skeletal material.
See report (S11) for further details. The results of this work are also summarised in (S16).
J. Allen (NLA), 12 January 2005.

March 2005. During monitoring visit on NAU evaluation in and around barn to north (which appears to conform to (S3) but is being converted).
Two canted tiebeams with mortices for arched braces noted as being built into Abbey Farmhouse, said to come from this barn; if so it would seem they had already been re-used once. From a partition wall in the house came quantities of re-used medieval carved stone, 13th to 15th century. Further stone from barn. Full record being made by S. Heywood (Norfolk County Council).
To the west a second barn, not listed and outside scheduled area, flint and brick with large cart porch; slit windows mutilated; probably 18th century. Third and largest barn to west is of 1961 and very good for that date.
E. Rose (NLA), 21 March 2005.

(S12) in file confirms that the ruined central tower is no longer in ecclesiastical ownership but is part of the private property to the north. Print-out of (S13) in file.
E. Rose (NLA), 17 October 2005.

July 2006.
Scheduled monument consent granted regarding the construction of paths and patio areas around Abbey farmhouse, the re-laying of the lawn and flower beds in the cloister area, the planing of Box Parterre and relaying of lawn to the north of the property and the construction of a woodblock driveway to the house.
See (S10)
H. White (NLA), 6 April 2009.

July 2006. Watching Brief.
Monitoring of groundworks associated with construction of lawn area and driveway immediately to the north of Abbey farmhouse.
Although gravel surfacing material was removed the depth was insufficient to expose earlier deposits. No archaeologically significant material was present in the spoil.
See report (S14) for further details.
P. Watkins (HES), 14 July 2014.

July 2007.Weybourne Priory
Scheduled monument consent granted concerning the installation of a French drain around the northern wall of the barn, and the reduction of the ground level on the easern wall to eradicate water ingress through the scheduled wall. Separate consent granted for the evaluation by trial trenching of an area for proposed development of a swimming pool.
See (S10)
H. White (NLA), 6 April 2009.

January 2008.
Section 17 management agreement renewed.
See (S15).
D. Robertson (NLA), 14 January 2008.

March 2012. Survey of ruins.
Prior to repairs starting. See (S18) for schedule of works and (S19) for drawings. Some variation of detail on discussion on site with contractor.
Walled garden. Northern section of east wall of walled garden fell during a gale destroying a mature quince tree.
S. Heywood (HES), 21 March 2012.

July 2012. Watching Brief.
Monitoring of groundworks associated with the construction of a new structure at Abbey Farm.
This work provided an opportunity to examine a number of walls and other structural elements associated with what would have been the medieval refectory. Deposits likely to have been associated with both the construction and demolition of the priory buildings were also noted in service trenches excavated beyond the footprint of the refectory.
See report (S20) and NHER 61920 for further details.
P. Watkins (HES), 1 November 2016.

Monument Types

  • CHURCH (Late Saxon to 21st Century - 950 AD to 2100 AD)
  • FLOOR (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • GRAFFITI (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • MOAT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • PRIORY (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • PRIORY (12th Century to 21st Century - 1199 AD to 2100 AD)
  • BARN (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • CELLAR (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • DRAIN (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • FLOOR (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • PIT (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • STAKE HOLE (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • WAR MEMORIAL (Early 20th Century to 21st Century - 1901 AD to 2100 AD)

Associated Finds

  • HUMAN REMAINS (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD?)
  • STATUE (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • ANIMAL REMAINS (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD?)
  • MOLLUSCA REMAINS (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • POT (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Protected Status

  • Scheduled Monument
  • Listed Building
  • Listed Building
  • Listed Building

Sources and further reading

---Article in Serial: Fairweather, F. H. 1931. Excavations in Norfolk; Summer 1930. Antiquaries Journal. XI No 2 pp 168-169. p 168.
---Article in Serial: 1933. Proceedings of the Congress. Journal of the British Archaeological Association. Second Series Vol XL. pp 70-72.
---Designation: [unknown]. Ancient Monuments Form. SAM Record. DNF174.
---Article in Serial: Gunn, J. 1849. Notices of Remains of Ecclesiastical Architectural in Norfolk, supposed to be of the Saxon Period. The Archaeological Journal. Vol VI pp 359-363. p 362.
---Monograph: Bryant, T. H. 1902. Hundred of Holt. The Churches of Norfolk. Vol IX. pp 161-168.
---Record Card: Ordnance Survey Staff. 1933-1979?. Ordnance Survey Record Cards. TG 14 SW 8; TG 14 SW 9 [5]; TG 14 SW 22; TG 14 SW 32.
---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Monograph: Pevsner, N. and Wilson, B. 1997. Norfolk 1: Norwich and North-East. The Buildings of England. 2nd Edition. pp 720-722.
---Article in Serial: Fairweather, F. H. 1932. The Augustinian Priory of Weybourne, Norfolk. Norfolk Archaeology. Vol XXIV Pt III pp 201-228.
---Monograph: Mortlock, D. & Roberts, C.. 1981. The Popular Guide to Norfolk Churches, No.1. North-East Norfolk..
---Photograph: Hobbs, B.. 2005. LVY-LVZ.
---Leaflet: Weybourne Priory and Parish Church.. Weybourne Parochial Church Council.
---Monograph: Hart, S.. 2010. Medieval Church Window Tracery in England. p 120.
---Monograph: Taylor, H.M. and Taylor, J.. 1978. Anglo Saxon Architecture..
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2012. Artist whose talent was overlooked is in the spotlight. 4 July.
---Record Card: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Late Saxon. Weybourne.
---Record Card: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Medieval. Weybourne.
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
---Slide: Various. Slide.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2013. Ancient priory project land top award. 28 September.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2013. Spotlight on the buildings that open a window on our past. 10 October.
---Designation: English Heritage. 1990-2013. English Heritage Scheduling Notification. Notification. DNF174.
---Designation: English Heritage. 1994? -2011?. English Heritage Digital Designation Record. Record. DNF174.
---Designation: English Heritage. 1990-2013. English Heritage Listing Notification. Notification. DNF6867.
<S1>Monograph: Pevsner, N. 1962. North-East Norfolk and Norwich. The Buildings of England. 1st Edition. pp 341-342.
<S2>Article in Serial: Cozens-Hardy B. 1934. Norfolk Crosses. Norfolk Archaeology. Vol XXV Pt II pp 297-336. p 330.
<S3>Article in Serial: Manning, C. R. 1888. Weyborne Church and Priory. Norfolk Archaeology. Vol X pp 272-270.
<S3>Article in Serial: Jessop, A. 1888. Weyborne Priory. Norfolk Archaeology. Vol X pp 271-276.
<S4>Designation: English Heritage. National Heritage List for England. List Entry 1152481.
<S5>Unpublished Document: H. Paterson (A&E), MPP. Management Statement.
<S6>Unpublished Contractor Report: Penn, K. 2003. An Archaeological Evaluation at Abbey Farmhouse, Weybourne, Norfolk. Norfolk Archaeological Unit. 833.
<S7>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1952. RAF 58/844 5064-6 21-MAR-1952 (NMR).
<S8>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1955. RAF 82/1214 (F22) 0200-2 06-JUN-1955 (NMR).
<S9>Vertical Aerial Photograph: Ordnance Survey. 1981. OS/81081 102-4 17-AUG-1981 (NMR).
<S10>Designation: DCMS. [?]-2016. Scheduled Monument Consent. SAM Consent. DNF174.
<S11>Unpublished Contractor Report: Hobbs, B. 2005. An Archaeological Watching Brief at Abbey Farmhouse, Weybourne, Norfolk. Norfolk Archaeological Unit. 1002.
<S12>Unpublished Document: Herring, J. and others (Norwich Diocese). 2005. Letter, maps, etc..
<S13>Website: Knott, S.. 2006. All Saints, Weybourne. 14 September 2007.
<S14>Unpublished Contractor Report: Boyle, M. and Ratcliff, M. 2006. An Archaeological Watching Brief at Abbey Farm, Weybourne, 2006. NAU Archaeology. 1196.
<S15>Unpublished Document: Norfolk County Council. 2007-2008. Section 17 Management Agreement.
<S16>Article in Serial: Gurney, D. and Penn, K. 2005. Excavations and Surveys in Norfolk in 2004. Norfolk Archaeology. Vol XLIV Pt IV pp 751-763. p 762.
<S17>Article in Serial: Gurney, D. and Penn, K. 2004. Excavations and Surveys in Norfolk 2003. Norfolk Archaeology. Vol XLIV Pt III pp 573-588. p 588.
<S18>Unpublished Document: Heywood, S. 2012. Schedule of repairs to Weybourne Priory Ruins. January.
<S19>Unpublished Contractor Report: Wilson Compton Associates. 2007. The Augustinian Friary, Weybourne, Norfolk. Measured Drawings of the North Cloister Range and Dark Entry. Wilson Compton Associates.
<S20>Unpublished Contractor Report: Hickling, S. 2012. Archaeological Watching Brief at Weybourne Priory, Weybourne, Norfolk. NPS Archaeology. 3124.

Related records

47379Parent of: Abbey Farmhouse, The Street (Building)
47631Parent of: Barn at Abbey Farm north of Abbey Farmhouse (Building)
41266Parent of: Medieval and post medieval finds and features, Abbey Farm barn (Monument)

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