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Historic England Research Records

Polsloe Priory

Hob Uid: 448333
Location :
Devon
Exeter
Exeter
Grid Ref : SX9411093810
Summary : The standing and buried remains of St Katherine's Priory, Polsloe, a Benedictine nunnery founded before 1159 and dissolved in 1539. The standing remains of the west range of the cloister take the form of a free-standing, rectangular two-storeyed building, Listed Grade II*. This building represents the extent of the main part of the west range which was in existence until circa 1300. The fabric of this structure, mainly local breccia, is visible in the east end of the present north wall, and as a plinth. In circa 1300 the west range was rebuilt, mainly in local sandstone. Most of the fabric of the existing structure dates to this period. The ground floor of the range was occupied by a storeroom with a parlour in the northern bay. The first floor provided accommodation and a garderobe. This structure was converted into a community centre in 1980. The buried remains of the priory church occupy a slightly elevated position at the northern end of the site. The remains of the cloister garth are located adjacent to the south side of the church which was enlarged after 1300. The east range originated as a long narrow building about 41 metres by 7 metres. The sacristy and chapter house would have been located in this range with the nuns dorter on the upper floor. The southern end of the west range was progressively extended by a sequence of kitchen buildings, and the area between the east and west ranges, bordered to the north by the south range containing the refectory, appears to have been enclosed as a garden. After the reconstruction of circa 1300 the east range was widened to 10 metres, the west range extended with rebuilt kitchens, and the south range moved southwards to accommodate a larger cloister. The area to the north east of the church was traditionally occupied by the monastic burial ground. Part excavation has revealed burials to the east of the church, and within the church, cloister, sacristy, and chapter house. Scheduled.
More information : [SX 9411 9381] Polsloe Priory remains of (NAT) St. Katherine's Priory
(NR) (Benedictine Nuns)(NAT) (1)

St. Katherine's Prior (Benedictine Nuns) at Polsloe was founded before 1160 by William, Lord Brewer.
Lay-sisters are recorded in the 14th century and the priory was said
to be in great proverty in 1327. In 1347, after the death of the
prioress, 16 members of the community elected her successor. The
house was surrendered in 1538, and the prioress and 13 nuns were
granted pensions. In 1553, 7 nuns were still on the pension. The
existing, 13th century and later, two storey building of red brick
with a pantiled roof represents part of the west range of domestic
priory buildings. Excavations in 1930 and 1978 have revealed the
disposition of the main ranges of buildings. (2-4)

Polsloe Priory, Grade II*, Beacon Lane. Remains of St. Katherine's
Priory of which the Church was probably 12th century. (For full
description see list.) (5)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : OS 1:1250 1957
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 2
Source : Medieval religious houses in England and Wales
Source details :
Page(s) : 254, 263
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 3
Source : List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest
Source details : Exeter, 18-JUN-1974
Page(s) : 14
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 4
Source : Medieval archaeology : journal of the Society for Medieval Archaeology
Source details :
Page(s) : 250-1
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 13 (1979)
Source Number : 6
Source : Scheduled Monument Notification
Source details : 23-Feb-98
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :

Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : Founded before 1159
Monument End Date : 1159
Monument Start Date :
Monument Type : Benedictine Nunnery, Priory
Evidence : Extant Building, Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : To 1539
Monument End Date : 1539
Monument Start Date :
Monument Type : Cemetery
Evidence : Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : To circa 1300
Monument End Date : 1310
Monument Start Date :
Monument Type : Priory, Church, Cloister Garth, Sacristy, Chapter House, Dormitory, Refectory, Garden, Cloister, Monastic Dwelling, Storehouse, Garderobe
Evidence : Sub Surface Deposit, Architectural Component
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : Circa 1300 reconstruction
Monument End Date : 1310
Monument Start Date : 1290
Monument Type : Monastic Dwelling, Garderobe, Storehouse, Cloister, Cloister Garth, Kitchen
Evidence : Extant Building, Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : Dissolved in 1539
Monument End Date : 1539
Monument Start Date : 1539
Monument Type : Benedictine Nunnery, Priory
Evidence : Extant Building, Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Converted in 1980
Monument End Date : 1980
Monument Start Date : 1980
Monument Type : Community Centre
Evidence : Extant Building

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : SMR Number (Devonshire)
External Cross Reference Number : 3
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : DV 118
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (National No.)
External Cross Reference Number : 24848
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Listed Building List Entry Legacy Uid
External Cross Reference Number : 88874
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : SX 99 SW 57
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Related Activities :
Associated Activities : ST KATHERINE'S PRIORY,POLSLOE
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1935-01-01
End Date : 1941-12-31
Associated Activities : ST KATHERINE'S PRIORY,POLSLOE
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1976-01-01
End Date : 1979-12-31