St Dogmael's Abbey
History, tourist information, and nearby accommodation
The site by the Teifi was already considered sacred, used as a "clas", or Celtic church called Llandudoch.
The abbey was continually built and extended over 4 centuries, and gained attention as a centre for scholarship, famed for its library. One book survives from the medieval library; a 13th century copy of Historia Ecclesiastica by Eusebiuss. According to the Welsh poet Sion Mawddwy, the silver harp of Henllys was delivered to St Dogmael's for safe keeping. The monks of St Dogmael's also owned the Isle of Caldey, which became a popular pilgrimage centre in the Middle Ages.
When the Reformation finally put an end to the monastery, its buildings were converted into a private house by John Bradshaw of Presteigne. No trace now remains of Bradshaw's mansion. By the 17th century the site was recorded as a ruin.
The nave of the church dates from the 13th century, and the remains of the crypt and chapter house from the 14th. Among the best surviving features are large sections of medieval floor tiles in the abbey church.
Beside the abbey ruins is a much later Victorian church, and the restored Coach House, now a museum and visitor centre housing a display of beautifully carved medieval stones from the abbey and even more intriguing early Christian stones.
We've visited St Dogmael's twice, and though the site is not large, it is certainly impressive, and the exhibition of carved stones in the museum is excellent.
About St Dogmael's Abbey
Address: Shingrug, St Dogmaels, Cardigan, Ceredigion, Wales, SA43 3DX
Attraction Type: Abbey
Location: 1 mile south of Cardigan, off the B4546
Website: St Dogmael's Abbey
Phone: 01239 615389
OS: SN163 458
Photo Credit: David Ross and Britain Express
Opening Details: Open access site, usually accessible at any reasonable time
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Heritage Rated from 1- 5 (low-exceptional) on historic interest
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Ffynone Mansion - 6.5 miles (Historic House)
Pentre Ifan - 6.7 miles (Prehistoric Site)
Cenarth, St Llawddog's Church - 7 miles (Historic Church)
National Coracle Centre, Cenarth Falls - 7.1 miles (Museum)
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