Sempringham: Village to Priory to Mansion
Standing alone in empty fields set back from any road is the small but beautiful St Andrew’s church of Sempringham. It once lay at the heart of a thriving medieval settlement and was the scene of the foundation of England’s only monastic order. Founded by St Gilbert, the son of a local Norman knight in the mid 12th century, Sempringham Priory was a double foundation, catering for both nuns and canons.
After the dissolution, the site of the priory passed to Lord Clinton, who built Sempringham Hall over the site of the Priory. This mansion was almost as large as some of the great Tudor palaces of the day but survived barely 100 years.
This book draws on the results of past and recent archaeological work at Sempringham to provide a story of several millennia of landscape history, prehistoric land use, Roman and Saxon settlement, medieval occupation and monastic life.
by Paul Cope-Faulkner