Little Malvern Priory Church
History, tourist information, and nearby accommodation
HERITAGE HIGHLIGHTS: 15th-century rood screen and stained glass east window
The Priory was dissolved under Henry VIII in 1534, but by that time it was in poor condition and only 6 monks remained. The Berrington family purchased the monastic buildings and had the manor house of Little Malvern Court created from the remains of the Prior's Hall and the cloisters. The monastic grounds became the gardens for the new Court.
The priory church continued to deteriorate over the following centuries and the roof finally collapsed in 1864. The Berringtons paid for a new roof, and restored the church building.
Perhaps the most interesting historic relic is the beautifully carved 14th century wooden screen, with an ornate rood beam. Beneath the pulpit is a section from a 14th century table tomb, with a series of 4 weepers carved in relief.
The east window is well worth examining; there are fragments of 15th century glass installed by Bishop Alcock during his restoration of the priory. Here you can make out likenesses of Edward IV and his royal family.
Prince Edward, one of the 'Princes in the Tower', is on the left, while his mother, Elizabeth Woodville is in the centre (minus her head). while to the right are Edward's 4 daughters, including Elizabeth of York, who married Henry VII and united the houses of Lancaster and York, effectively bringing the Wars of the Roses to a close.
William LanglandThe man who might rightly be considered the father of English prose was born in Malvern Chase around the year 1332. His father was a friend of the lord of the estate, Hugh Despenser the Younger, a favourite of Edward II and one of the most powerful men in the kingdom. Langland grew up on the estate and when he was old enough his father and some friends pooled their money to have him educated by the monks of Little Malvern Priory.
The open takes the form of a series of vignettes, moving between dreams and waking. There is no coherent plot, rather the poem is like a dream; full of seemingly random and bizarre events. He (Langland) meets a poor ploughman named Piers, whose simple goodness is summed up by the verse;
'When all treasures are tried, truth is the best,The poem is a call to meet the greed and corruption of the world with love.
Learn to love and leave all other'
Do not confuse Little Malvern Priory with Great Malvern Priory! Its an easy mistake to make, but the 2 sites are about 4 miles apart and are not connected in any way. Also, the name is sometimes used interchangeably to refer to the church and the manor of Little Malvern Court that was built from part of the former monastic buildings.
About Little Malvern Priory Church
Address: A4104, Little Malvern, Worcestershire, England, WR14 4JN
Attraction Type: Historic Church
Location: On the A4104 at Little Malvern, beside the Court
Website: Little Malvern Priory Church
Photo Credit: David Ross and Britain Express
NEARBY HISTORIC ATTRACTIONS
Heritage Rated from 1- 5 (low to exceptional) on historic interest
Little Malvern Court - 0 miles (Historic Building)
Malvern Hills - 3 miles (Countryside)
Eastnor Castle - 3.1 miles (Historic House)
Great Malvern Priory Church - 3.5 miles (Historic Church)
Ledbury Heritage Centre - 3.9 miles (Museum)
Ledbury, St Michael's Church - 4 miles (Historic Church)
Butchers Row House Museum - 4 miles (Museum)
16th Century Painted Room, Ledbury - 4 miles (Historic Building)
Nearest Accommodation to Little Malvern Priory Church: