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PLYMPTON PRIORY

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The surviving remains of Plympton Priory, on the east side of the city of Plymouth and the west side of the medieval town of Plympton. The monument consists of the upstanding remains and part of the buried remains of an Augustinian priory in occupation from 1121 until 1539. The priory possibly occupies the site of a minster that was in existence by AD 909 (see SX55NW59). The visible remains of the priory exists in the form of sections of the ruined walls incorporated into later boundary walls which preserve the outline of part of the layout of the church, cloister and west range. Of the 12th century priory church a 20 metre length of the west end of the north wall of the nave survives up to 1.7 metres in height. A 25 metre length of the south wall of the nave survives up to 3.2 metres in height, and contains part of the eastern reveal of one of the two doorways leading into the cloister. To the west of this wall there is an isolated fragment of wall 2.2 metres in length and 2.6 metres high. Two fragments of the northern half of the west front, up to 1.3 metres high, remain visible. Archaeological excavation has revealed five phases of construction between the 12th and 15th centuries. The cloister stood to the south of the church and from the excavated foundations measured some 30 metres east-west, being overlain to the east by the present boundary wall. On the assumption that the cloister was square, the south range now lies beneath the access road and beneath the Tower House in Old Priory to the south of the church. The Tower House, which is Listed Grade II, is a later structure incorporating Norman architectural fragments from a priory building that stood to the south east of the priory church but which was destroyed in the late 19th century. It has been assumed that the priory overlies the Saxon minster, but there is no certain evidence for this. Dependencies: Marsh Barton priory cell, St Anthony in Roseland, Hospital of St Mary Magdalene, Plympton.

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