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Lilleshall Abbey

Telford, Shropshire

Featured Location Guide

Extensive ruins of an Augustinian abbey, later a Civil War stronghold, in a deeply rural setting. Much of the church survives, unusually viewable from gallery level, along with the lavishly sculpted processional door and other cloister buildings.



Lilleshall Abbey is the remains of a twelfth and thirteenth-century medieval monastery by the Arrouasian (later Augustinian) canons, known as black canons.. The nearby Haughmond Abbey was by the same order. While at Lilleshall Abbey a large amount of the church survives, at  Haughmond Abbey  the church does not but a larger part of the rest of the monastery does, these two sites therefore ideally should be viewed one after the other to get a good idea of the complete monasteries of this order.

Lilleshall Abbey was partly destroyed by a siege during the Civil War, in the same period nearby Morton Corbet Castle was also left as a ruin after capture by Parliamentarian forces in 1645, providing other large remains from this period.

The remains of the church and other large domestic buildings can still be seen.

Other buildings such as a lady chapel and canon's dormitory is known to have existed on the site and is thought to have been situated to the north-east of the church.

The abbey was enclosed by a large precinct wall, of which little survives today.


It is thought Lilleshall Abbey was founded by Richard de Belmeis who settled a group of Arrouasian canons at the site in around 1148. Records exist that show the abbey gained much of its income from farmland, two water mills, a small collection of properties in Shrewsbury and tolls made from the use of the Atcham Bridge over the River Severn.

However, by the early fourteenth Century the abbey was heavily in debt and the abbeys suppression is thought to have occurred in around 1538 when it is recorded that the property and goods of the abbey were sold for 75. At this time as well as the Abbot, there were 9 canons and 43 servants at the abbey, including a schoolmaster.

At the time of the Civil War, the abbey was fortified for King Charles I by Sir Richard Leveson. It was partly destroyed by a siege in the Civil War. Following the Civil War the abbey seems to have been left in a ruined state of decay.

A guide book covering Haughmond Abbey, Lilleshall Abbey and Moreton Corbet Castle is available at Haughmound Abbey.

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Further information Grid



Lilleshall Abbey, nr Telford, Shropshire

Ceremonial County: Shropshire

Grid Reference:


Map Link:


Aerial photo: Google Aerial 



Best Times to Visit:






Other useful websites:


Nearby Locations: Haughmond Abbey
Other Relevant pages: Abbey Section, including all major Christian buildings, regions orders, normal layouts and history.


Planning Grid


Lilleshall Abbey, nr Telford, Shropshire

Grid Reference:


Getting there:

On an unclassified road off A518, 4 miles N of Oakengates







Things To Do, See and Photograph:

Buildings, architecture, views.

What to take:

Tripod, level, wide angle lens.

Nature highlights:





TF10 9HW


01216 256820

Opening times:

1 Apr-30 Sep every day 10am-5pm
Closed Oct-Mar



Photo Restrictions:


Other Restrictions: None
Special Needs Access:  
Special Needs Facilities:  
Children Facilities:  
Dogs Allowed: dogs on leads

Please let us know any other information that we can add to the Further information and Planning Grids or page and any errors that you discover. Before making a long trip to any location it is always wise to double check the current information, websites like magazines may be correct at the time the information is written, but things change and it is of course impossible to double check all entries on a regular basis. If you have any good photographs that you feel would improve the illustration of this page then please let us have copies. In referring to this page it is helpful if you quote both the Page Ref and Topic or Section references from the Grid below. To print the planning grid select it then right click and print the selected area.

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By: Keith Park Section: Abbey and Religious Buildings Key:
Page Ref: Lilleshall_Abbey Topic: Abbeys Last Updated: 02/2011

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