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Historic England Research Records

Selby Abbey

Hob Uid: 58066
Location :
North Yorkshire
Selby
Selby
Grid Ref : SE6156832375
Summary : Benedictine Abbey founded circa 1070 and dissolved in 1539, when all buildings other than the church were demolished. Situated on the site of an earlier hermitage or chapel built by Benedict of Auxerre, who came to England with a relic of St Germanus to build an abbey here. He was living in a hut here in 1069. The abbey church was made parochial in 1619. The west part of the nave and the lower part of the west front appear to be late 12th century. The north nave gallery and the upper parts of the west front appear to be mid-13th century. The chancel and some of the tracery elsewhere are of later 14th century date. The tower collapsed in 1690, and was repaired circa 1701-2. The church was restored in 1871-3 by Sir George Gilbert Scott, and again in 1889-90 by J Oldrid Scott. In 1906 a serious fire prompted the most drastic restoration of all, also by J Oldrid Scott, which included a new crossing tower (1908), south transept (circa 1912), and west towers (1935). Dependencies: Snaith and the Hospital at Wrawby.
More information : SE 615323. Abbey Church of St Mary and St Germain (C of E) (NAT).
(1)

Selby Abbey dedicated to Our Lord Jesus Christ, St Mary and St German for Benedictine Monks, was founded circa 1070 by a grant of William the Conquerer to Benedict, a monk from Auxerre, who had already established a hermitage or chapel here in 1069. The abbey was dissolved in 1539 (2)(3) and the abbey church (see below) was made parochial in 1619 (4).

No remains of the cloister and monastic buildings are now visible. The foundations of the chapter-house were exposed by the Archaeological Institute in 1867 but this does not appear to have been planned.

The portion of the western range abutting the church was planned and described by J C Buckler, architect, in 1814 prior to their destruction (see plan). This group of buildings comprised the dormitory and cellarage beneath, the abbot's chamber and long passage with chambers adjoining it, leading to the abbey gateway which was removed in 1792. (2-4)

1. THE CRESCENT
(north side)
5342
Church of St Mary and
St Germain
(Selby Abbey)

SE 6132 SE 5/1 16.12.52

I GV

2.
Parish Church, formerly the church of Selby Abbey, a mitred abbey, one of the three most important Benedictine houses in the north, and (traditionally) the earliest. Founded, according to tradition, in 1069. Dissolved 1536.

The church was begun by Abbot Hugh de Lacy (1097-1123), and from his campaign date the earlier part of the nave and transepts. The west part of the nave and the lower part of the west front appear to be late C12. The north nave gallery and the upper parts of the west front appear to be mid-C13. The chancel and some of the tracery elsewhere are of later C14 date.

The tower collapsed in 1690, and was repaired circa 1701-2, probably by "Mr Hall, a local builder of some note".

The church was restored in 1871-3 by Sir George Gilbert Scott, and again in 1889-90 by J Oldrid Scott. In 1906 a serious fire prompted the most drastic restoration of all, also by J Oldrid Scott, which included a new crossing tower (1908), south transept (circa 1912), and west towers (1935).

Font: apparently C12: very plain, circular, moulded base.

SE 615324. An unclassified moat appears to have surrounded Selby Abbey as described in a valuation of abbey timber in 1543. (7)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : OS 1:2500 map, 1963
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 2
Source : The Victoria history of the county of York: volume three
Source details :
Page(s) : 95-101
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 3
Source : Medieval religious houses in England and Wales
Source details :
Page(s) : 57,76
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 4
Source : The Yorkshire archaeological journal
Source details : 1893 (C C Hodges)
Page(s) : 344-94
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 12
Source Number : 5
Source : List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest
Source details : District of Selby, 14/11/1980
Page(s) : 05-Jul
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 6
Source : The Buildings of England
Source details : North Yorkshire and the West Riding, 1959
Page(s) : 435-42
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 7
Source : The Society for Medieval Archaeology monograph series
Source details : Number 5, 1973, "Moated Sites of Yorkshire", (H E J Le Patourel)
Page(s) : 127
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :

Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : Extant in 1069
Monument End Date : 1069
Monument Start Date : 1069
Monument Type : Hermitage (Religious), Chapel
Evidence : Demolished Building
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : 1070-1539
Monument End Date : 1539
Monument Start Date : 1070
Monument Type : Benedictine Monastery, Church, Abbey
Evidence : Extant Building, Demolished Building
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date : 1619 change of use
Monument End Date : 1619
Monument Start Date : 1619
Monument Type : Parish Church
Evidence : Extant Building
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date : Restored 1817
Monument End Date : 1817
Monument Start Date : 1817
Monument Type : Parish Church
Evidence : Extant Building
Monument Period Name : Post Medieval
Display Date : Restored 1889
Monument End Date : 1889
Monument Start Date : 1889
Monument Type : Parish Church
Evidence : Extant Building
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Restored 1906
Monument End Date : 1906
Monument Start Date : 1906
Monument Type : Parish Church
Evidence : Extant Building

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : NBR Index Number
External Cross Reference Number : 95544
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Listed Building List Entry Legacy Uid
External Cross Reference Number : 325718
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : Unified Designation System UID
External Cross Reference Number : 1132591
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : SE 63 SW 7
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 57947
Relationship type : General association

Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, SURVEY BY SYDNEY DECIMUS KITSON
Activity type : ARCHITECTURAL SURVEY
Start Date :
End Date :
Associated Activities : Primary, SELBY ABBEY
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1867-01-01
End Date : 1867-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, MARKET PLACE/ABBEY PLACE CABLING
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 1994-01-01
End Date : 1994-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, IRWIN'S YARD, SELBY
Activity type : EVALUATION
Start Date : 1996-01-01
End Date : 1996-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, A63 SCOTT ROAD TO SELBY ABBEY
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 1998-01-01
End Date : 1998-12-31