Bury St Edmunds – Abbey Gardens and Ruins

Yesterday I spent a lovely couple of hours in Bury St Edmunds with my friend Julie, it was a spur of the moment trip as originally we were going somewhere else but missed the bus by a few minutes!  We decided to get on the next bus going somewhere interesting, which was Bury St Edmunds! As a spur of the moment trip it wasn’t a bad choice!

I have been to Bury a few times but not really taken time out to appreciate its history, especially of that in the Abbey Gardens.  This area of Bury is its most fascinating part, and a great place for wandering around ruins whether you are adult or child.  ‘Hide and Seek’ seems to be the popular past time of choice for visiting children, the ruins are perfect for it!

Bury St Edmunds is a Suffolk market town close to the borders of Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Essex.  St Edmundsbury Cathedral and Abbey Gardens, in which the inspiring ruins are situated, are its focal point.

The site has been connected with religion and pilgrimage since the death of King Edmund in 869, after which an abbey to house his remains (he was murdered by Danes) was built.  A church was also built next to the abbey around that time, eventually receiving cathedral status in 1914.  The dissolution of monasteries in the 16th century meant that the abbey was dismantled and has been a ruin ever since.  This picture of the abbey shows how impressive the entire complex was before it became a ruin.

My second photo above is the entrance to the gardens, it is a great way to enter such an interesting place!   The Abbey Gardens area itself has a beautiful array of flowers in perfectly kept sections, the colours are amazing.  You can read more about these here.  There is also a play area, a bowling green and an aviary.

The ruins themselves are fantastic to walk around and very photogenic, I took so many pictures!  Here are a selection of my photos…



This last picture, as you can see, is commemorating a meeting between some barons of the abbey in which they agreed to ‘compel King John to sign the Magna Carter‘. Twenty five of the names on the plaque are the barons who were to enforce observance of it.  It seems though that historians are sceptical the meeting took place.  Still, it’s very interesting!  It’s not a particularly good picture of it so you might not be able to read it!

The ruins are a really inspiring place to sit and relax, or in our case bounce ideas off each other for novels/poems/essays set in the ruins! Just need to write the novel now…hmm!  Watch this space, hehe.

I am looking forward to making more trips to Bury St Edmunds in the name of research!  There are several museums to visit and other historical buildings to find out about and photograph.  It is also a great place to go shopping!

One last picture I want to include is this random picture I took of a tree in the gardens!  I am fascinated by trees at the moment because of my art class.  I’m not very good at making trees look like trees, so I’ve set myself a challenge to become good at them!  It’s such an interesting shape and fits in really well with its environment!


About Maria Explores...

Blogger and Freelance Writer
This entry was posted in Customs and Traditions, History, Museums, Travel and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Bury St Edmunds – Abbey Gardens and Ruins

  1. wonderful information and beautiful photos

  2. Candy Korman says:

    Thanks for the vicarious visit to St. Edmunds Abbey. Lovely post!

  3. This brings back memories of when I spent two blissful years living in Bury – I miss that place sometimes. Thanks!

  4. Jen Anderson says:

    Great photos! Reminds me of something a co-worker once said to me about Europe (we’re American). I said, “Everything is so beautiful over there,” and she said “well, they’ve had more time.”

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