Roche Abbey

School Visits

A visit to Roche Abbey can help students appreciate how Medieval monastic settlements worked, the effects of Tudor inspired religious changes and how abbeys became romantic ruins to enhance country estates in the 1800s.

“Fitted in with everything we are doing on the subject”

Teacher, KS2

Curriculum Links

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

  • KS1 History: local history studies, significant people and places
  • KS1 Geography: Develop knowledge about their locality.
  • KS1-2 History: Local history study, a unit of study after 1066
  • KS3 History: Development of Church, state and society in Britain
  • KS3 Religious Education: How and why individuals and communities express the meanings of their beliefs and values
  • KS3 Geography: Human geography
  • KS4 History: OCR History A: Study of the historic environment; OCR History B: History around us, British depth study
  • KS4 Religious Education: Investigate and analyse the beliefs and practices of religion
  • KS5 History: OCR A Level: English government and the church, The church and Medieval heresy

Free Self-Led Visits

Book a free self-led visit to Roche Abbey and organise your day to suit your curriculum objectives. The building is fascinating to explore and the grounds provide an ideal place for a picnic.

The water supply to the abbey provides points of interest and the transept arches are an excellent example of early Gothic architecture. Can your students find the carved heads in the Gatehouse and identify re-used stones in the Banqueting Lodge?

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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: Cannot be accessed by coaches but could park minibuses here.
    • TOILETS: Yes, including accessible.
    • LUNCH: No undercover space but picnics welcome.
    • SHOP: There is a small shop on site. Please visit in small groups.
    • EDUCATION ROOM or BAG STORAGE: There is no education room or bag storage on site.
    • ACCESSIBILITY: A side gate can be used for easy access onto the site for wheelchair users. There is level access to the Abbey House and shop. There are two sets of stairs leading out of the abbey.
    • WET WEATHER: The site is mostly outdoor so please wear appropriate clothing.
  • 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: Monday-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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