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Ellerton Priory By Emma Watson
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The Ellerton Priory ruins are situated in the tiny parish of Ellerton Abbey. This is a reference to the 1830’s manor house on the site, rather than the priory itself. It is in a beautiful... More > situation in Swaledale, in Yorkshire. In the medieval period, it was in the Parish of Downholme and the Wapentake of Hang West. Ellerton Priory site occupies part of the floodplain of the River Swale, in its lower valley and is surrounded by a scarp slope to the North, which would have provided shelter, and sloping hills to the South, which would have been ideal for agriculture. There is clear evidence of prehistoric cairns and a possible settlement, a prehistoric or early medieval dyke, medieval ploughing, later enclosure and land management. However, despite obvious earthworks and upstanding remains, Ellerton’s early ecclesiastical history is obscure. In fact, Fieldhouse and Jennings commented, ‘Very little is known about the economy of Ellerton Priory, one of the poorest of all monastic foundations’.< Less

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