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Thursday, February 18, 2010

Wed 17th Feb 2010 - Quarr Abbey.

Our first visit of 2010 to Quarr Abbey and despite a weather forecast of heavy rain, the day was gloriously bright and sunny. Our task was to continue the work we commenced last year on one of the footpaths through the Abbey grounds. This involved removal of bramble and cutting the trees down to the height of the top of the fence, to highlight the view across to theSolent. The resulting debris was then loaded into trailers and transported to a specific area in the Abbey grounds.

Carrie’s History Lesson

The original monks at Quarr were actually Cistercians, with a stricter, more literal observance of the Rule of St Benedict and a very real personal poverty. They wore a white habit but were frequently referred to as “grey monks”, though in fact their habit was of undyed wool. Mediaeval monasteries provided society nearly all the services we expect the State to provide today. Quarr was the hospital and infirmary, and some of the monks were doctors and pharmacists. The abbey also had a library, and was responsible for the maintenance of the bridge at Wootton, tide mills, salterns and a fish-house at Fishbourne. The monks were also responsible for many of the surrounding granges and churches, including St Nicholas’ chapel atCarisbrooke Castle. The abbey also provided defence against invasion, and gun-ports can still be seen in the outer walls facing the Solent.

Many thanks to Carrie for the text and some of the photographs and to Eddie for the other pics.

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