Discover the abbey's history in Porter's Lodge

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Find out more about the history of the Abbey in the Porter’s Lodge exhibition. Tucked inside the original gatehouse is the contemporary structure which houses the interpretation centre.

The Porter's Lodge sits on the edge of the west green overlooking the Abbey. Important visitors to the Abbey would have passed through the gatehouse and local poor people would have gathered outside the gates waiting for free food from the monks (alms for the poor).

Today you can learn about the Abbey’s rise from humble origins to religious powerhouse and eventual decline. You can also see a model showing the Abbey as it would have looked before the Dissolution of the Monasteries in the 1530s.

We opened the Porter's Lodge exhibition in 2008 and won a Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) award in 2009. Funding for the project came from the European Union Interreg NWE Converting Sacred Spaces programme. This was a joint venture which Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal has been a part of, along with Belgium, Britain, France, Ireland and The Netherlands.

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