Thursday, 25 June 2009

Hampshire: Mottisfont Abbey

Mottisfont Abbey is an historic site near Romsey, Hampshire, England. The site in the Test Valley is thought to originate from Saxon times where meetings were held. In 1201, William Briwere founded an Augustinian priory on the site, which was later converted into a house by William Lord Sandys.

Today the site is owned by the National Trust and used for tourism. It has beautiful kitchen gardens and is occasionally used for theatre productions in the summer months. Within the Abbey there is a drawing room decorated by Rex Whistler, and Derek Hill's picture collection.
The gardens are home to the National Collection of ancestral species and 19th-century roses created by Graham Stuart Thomas. The roses are at their best in June.

There is also a children's quiz and trail.
There is a seven mile circular walk around the estate that can be accessed from the car park between 9am and 6pm even when the rest of the estate is closed. The woodland areas of the Estate, Spearywell Wood and The Great Copse, together with the car park, are the only areas in which dogs are admitted.

In 1996–1998 a group of geophysicists surveyed the south lawn of the current mansion, under which lies the cloisters of the church, using a technique called resistivity

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