Stratton-on-the-Fosse: St Gregory

Status: 
Open
Number of Burials: 
233
Number of Memorials: 
218
Access: 

On the main road, next to St Benedict’s church is a signpost to the abbey. Follow this to the abbey’s visitor centre. Opposite, on the southern side of the road, is a path leading to the office and the archive & library. About 10m down this path is another path which leads to the burial ground. For the abbey itself, the small entrance is by the north-western corner.

The eastern end of the abbey's church

The Benedictine Abbey of St Gregory the Great at Downside was established in 1814 moving from Acton Burnell where it had been from 1794 having fled from its monastery at Douai in the wake of the French Revolution. The expansion of the monastery and the building of the church started in 1873, the monastery opening in 1876 and the church in 1882, with various chapels being added at later dates. The Lady Chapel was completed in 1888.  The formal consecration of the abbey's church occurred in 1935, this beoing performed by Cardinal Justinian Seredi, Prince Primate Hungary, Archbishop of Esztergom. The church is the burial place of several notable clerics and benefactors. The main burial ground for the monks is east of the church in an area bounded by a hedge.

The monks' burial ground

In 2020, the monastic community of Downside Abbey was home to fifteen monks when it announced that it would move away from the present monastery and seek a new place to live. On 27 Oct 2021, the monastic community further announced – and it was reported in many newspapers - that as part of their transition they would move in Spring 2022 to the temporary accommodation of Southgate House, in the grounds of Buckfast Abbey, another Benedictine establishment. The move occurred in March 2022.

The sections are: A for the monks' main burial ground, B for the burials east of the sacristry, C for inside the church and D for under the Lady Chapel.

Documentation: 

The Downside Abbey Guidebook contains a plan of the church showing the locations of the burials inside the church as well as the various side-chapels.

Downside Abbey ―An Architectural History edited by Dom Aidan Bellinger.

Findagrave has information on 68 individuals buried at Downside Abbey. While there is a picture of the main burial ground, it does not document these memorials systematically.

Coverage in Index: 
1819-2018