Places Of Worship
Title: Lewes Priory
Description: Now amounting to little more than foundations, the remains of Lewes Priory can easily be seen. Once the main house for the Cluniac monastery, the tombs of the founders plus original tomb furnishings can be seen in the neo-Norman chapel in Southover.
Address: Off Cockshut Road, Southover, Lewes, East Sussex
Founded by William and Gundrada de Warrenne in 1077, the priory of St Pancras was the only Cluniac monastery in Sussex. Once holding fifty-six churches in the county, this was the greatest house of Cluniac monks in England.
Destroyed after the Dissolution of the Monasteries by an Italian engineer (he was employed by the king's commissioner, Thomas Cromwell), what was left was further damaged when the Lewes to Brighton railway line was laid through the site in 1845. The tombs of William and Gundrada were discovered during the construction of the railway and as a result of the interest generated, the Sussex Archaeological Society was founded in 1846.
The remains of the founders plus original tomb furnishings (these had previously been moved to Isfield church) can now be found in the neo-Norman chapel which was built on the south side of St John's church in Southover High Street in 1847.
Amounting to little more than the foundations and although they are now fenced off, the remains of the priory can clearly be seen.