Muchelney Abbey

School Visits

Muchelney Abbey was once a wealthy Benedictine house and the second oldest religious foundation in Somerset, but as during the dissolution the abbey’s principal buildings were demolished by Henry VIII in 1538. Pupils can exlpore the clearly laid out foundations of the abbey, parts of the richly decorated cloister walk and thatched monks’ lavatory - the only one of its kind in Britain. There is also a display of artefacts found at the Abbey, a brilliant resource to illustrate monastic life to your students. 
 
“Well organised, friendly and enjoyable”
Teacher, KS2
Image © Historic England Archive

Curriculum Links

Support your teaching in the classroom by stepping out of it. A visit to Muchelney Abbey will help you bring learning to life, covering multiple topics across the curriculum and key stages.

  • KS1 History: significant historical events, people and places in their own locality
  • KS2-3 History: a local history study
  • KS3 History: the development of Church, state and society in Medieval Britain 1066-1509
© Historic England Archive

Free Self-Led Visits

Book a free self-led visit to Muchelney Abbey and organise your day to suit your curriculum objectives. Exlpore all areas of medieval monastic life, from the richly decorated cloister to the only complete thatched monks' lavatory in England. Pupils can also see the Tudor house with lovely intact rooms and beautiful architecture, to bring this period of history to life. 

A small handling collection of replica items is available for loan whist on site. Please request this when booking. 

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Plan Your Trip

We have a wide range of materials to support your visit and make school trip planning easy. You can find all our site-specific information and tools below, and further information on our what to expect page.

Download our free resources to help you make the most out of your visit and create unique learning experiences before, during and after your trip. We also offer free planning visits once you have made a booking, plus a 20% discount on the official English Heritage guidebook for your place of choice.

Once you book your visit you’ll be sent a visit permit, which you’ll need to bring with you on the day.

Visit our bookings page to start planning your trip!

  • Facilities
    • PARKING: Car and coach park adjacent to the entrance.
    • TOILETS: Unisex toilet (accessible for wheelchair users).
    • LUNCH: There is no café, but picnics are welcome on site.
    • SHOP: There is a small shop selling a selection of English Heritage gifts and souvenirs. Guidebook available in the shop –Education groups receive a 20% discount on guidebooks. We ask the class visit the shop groups of 6 and supervised by a leader.
    • EDUCATION ROOM or BAG STORAGE: There is no education room or bag storage facility on site.
    • ACCESSIBILITY: There are designated disabled parking spaces in the car park. There is wheelchair access to the shop and museum. There are some uneven grassed surfaces and small steps throughout the site.
    • WET WEATHER: Wet weather shelter may be available in the museum space. Site staff will do their best to accommodate in inclement weather. Groups should come dressed in suitable clothing and footwear.
  • Hazard Information

    A useful tool to help with your risk assessments.

     

    You must meet the following ratios for leaders to students on the day of your visit when booking, and if your group is forming smaller groups while at the site:

    • Ages 4-5 (UK Reception) 1 leader for every 4 students (1:4)
    • Ages 5-7 (UK Key Stage 1) 1 leader for every 6 students (1:6)
    • Ages 7-11 (UK Key Stage 2) 1 leader for every 10 students (1:10) and
    • Ages 11-18 (UK Key Stages 3, 4, and 5) 1 leader for every 15 students (1:15)
    • For an adult learning group, consisting of individuals all over the age of 18, there are no ratios but there must be an appointed group leader
    • All ratios outlined above apply to home education groups
    • If your group consists of children aged 3 and/or 4, you must also refer to the Early Years and Foundation Stage Statutory Framework which sets out specific legal requirements for minimum ratios for this age group, to include requirements about the qualifications of the leaders
    • SEND groups must meet the minimum ratios above but may bring any additional leaders as required to adequately support their group
  • Education Site Opening Times

    We offer free self-led education visits during school term time*

    *Free education visits are not offered on UK public holidays or during the operation of additional fee paying public events at English Heritage sites.

    • April-October: Wednesday-Sunday 10-5pm
    • November-March: No bookings can be taken at the current time

Learning Resources

  • Teaching Medieval History

    Use historical information, learning activities and tips from our historians, curators and educational experts to support your teaching of medieval history.

  • Teaching Tudors and Stuarts

    Use historical information, learning activities and tips from our historians, curators and educational experts to support your teaching of the Tudors and Stuarts.

  • A Mini Guide to Medieval Monks

    Find out more about different medieval monastic orders with our short animation.

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