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Pocket Guide: England Cleeve Abbey Hotels

Cleeve Abbey, near Washford in Somerset, is a Grade I listed building that was founded in 1198 and whose convent buildings, despite the best efforts of the Reformation, have survived in an almost complete state. Apart from its historic and architectural importance, the abbey is set in beautiful rural surroundings and makes a good destination if you're based in the region, perhaps in a Somerset hotel or guesthouse.

Living History at Cleeve Abbey from Hereford Hotels

The main fabric of Cleeve Abbey belongs to the 13th Century and although the church itself was destroyed under Henry VIII the convent buildings are in pretty good shape. These are the main attraction today. The refectory was reconstructed in the 15th Century and the medieval hall's superb timber roof is one of the best examples of its kind in Somerset. It's a great place to visit from any Somerset hotel or B&B in the region, as the road links even in such a rural area are excellent. Whether you're here on your own, with a partner or as a family, Abbey ruins are always a great attraction.

Visit Cleeve Abbey from Somerset Hotels

From your nearby comfortable Wessex base, such as the Bower Inn in Bridgwater or the Fox & Goose Inn at neighbouring Highbridge, Cleeve Abbey makes a conveniently close destination for an afternoon's outing, weather permitting! It's an educational visit that will give you an insight into the life of a monk about 800 years ago in these parts.

The surroundings too are beautiful, as the abbey is situated in a lush valley with plenty of walking routes in the surrounding countryside. You can include a visit here on a trip on the West Somerset Railway, with local Washford station just a short distance from the ruins. If you hang on to your train ticket you can then use it to receive a discount on the entrance fee. In the grounds of Cleeve Alley there's a pleasant stream and several good picnic locations, so the place is perfect for a family outing in the summer especially. Any local Somerset hotel will be able to give you directions.