Llanthony Secunda Priory Reformation Project

On 10 November, the Llanthony Secunda Priory Re-Formation Project received a CPRE Gloucestershire Award, in recognition as a project demonstrating sustainability and resulting in significant improvements to the environment and facilities for communities.

As key members of the project delivery team, Croft Building and Conservation Ltd, Caroe and Cotswold Archaeology were also presented with certificates to celebrate and recognise their involvement with this project.

The Medieval Range and Victorian Farmhouse during refurbishment

This represents the culmination of many years of archaeological work at the priory and adjacent areas as part of the Gloucester Quays redevelopment, the earliest evaluation having been undertaken in 2003.

CA’s involvement in the Re-Formation Project began in 2014 with a programme of archaeological evaluation (together with watching briefs and Historic Building Recording) in support of a Heritage Lottery Fund bid for the project. The bid was successful, and since 2016 archaeological mitigation works and Historic Building Recording were undertaken in response to the programme of redevelopment works. The results of these works have been published in Glevensis (2019, p28-42).

The Brick Range during reconstruction

The Re-Formation Project was focused on refurbishment of the Medieval Range and Victorian Farmhouse, and reconstruction of the Brick Range, with new services also required between these buildings and towards the West Gatehouse. Key findings of the project include:

  • Evidence for late medieval roof structures of the Medieval Range and Brick Range, which indicates that the surviving part of the Medieval Range functioned as a lodging associated with a former inserted gate passage. For the Brick Range, further information was gained on its relationship with an adjoining (but long-since demolished) half-timbered wing to its north-west.
  • Archaeological works within the Inner Great Court provided evidence for two possible courtyard buildings. The building to the south was probably associated with a large medieval oven, indicating domestic or possibly industrial activity.
  • The northern and southern extents of the Medieval Range were also clarified, and our understanding of the West Gatehouse and demolished North-West Range was also enhanced.
  • In line with the historical accounts, the archaeological evidence is for a major phase of redevelopment in the late 15th to early 16th centuries in the south-western corner of the Inner Great Court, when probable domestic and industrial buildings were demolished and replaced with new ranges for additional lodging at the southern end of the Inner Great Court.

Laurie Coleman and Martin Watts

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