Glastonbury

The Glastonbury Town Deal has secured £23.6 million investment for the town, representing a once-in-a-generation opportunity to deliver the objectives outlined in the Town Investment Plan

Glastonbury Abbey Piazza

Lead Organisation: Glastonbury Abbey

Enhancing the entrance and main visitor experience. This will improve indoor and outdoor facilities for visitors and open up the connection with the town centre, benefiting the local economy.

Funding

  • Towns Fund:  £0.94m
  • Co-Funding:  £0.5m

Outcomes

  • More people visiting Abbey space
  • Abbey is more financially viable and additional income generated for town centre businesses
Photo showing the current entrance to Glastonbury Abbey

Key Project Themes

  • Improve Health and Wellbeing
  • Enhance Culture and Branding

Rationale

  • Addresses the lack of visibility and accessibility of the Abbey for both residents and tourists.
  • Recognises the need for COVID-secure space where people can meet or exercise, enhancing wellbeing.

Project Summary

Located in the heart of the town, Glastonbury Abbey receives visitors from across the globe, yet its entrance is tucked away and somewhat underwhelming.

This project will significantly enhance the main entrance approaches and visitor reception facilities at Glastonbury Abbey, improving its visibility, accessibility and physical connection to the town. This in turn will help to boost the town’s cultural strengths, providing wider economic and social benefits.

Plans include an attractive open piazza space and improved facilities including a new ticket office, toilets and shop/café.

And it’s not just visitors to the Abbey who will benefit, as the piazza will provide a public meeting space that everyone will be able to appreciate and enjoy.

 

Click here to view the planning application details and documents.

 

Project FAQS

When will your project start?
Subject to all the permissions and funding being in place, we expect to start work on site in September 2023, with some preparation work towards the end of August, before the main contractors start.

How long will it take?
We hope the work on site will be finished in May/June 2024.

What is happening at the moment?
We submitted our planning application last year and this has recently been granted approval. We have been pulling the project team together, refining the project programme and applying for match funding to other grant funding bodies.

Will the abbey be closed whilst work is going on?
The main entrance, driveway, St Patrick’s Chapel and courtyard and the existing toilets will be closed once work begins. We are currently planning for an alternative entrance for visitors and will provide more information once the details have been decided. During works, the abbey grounds and ruins will remain open. We are hoping to keep the museum open to visitors for most of the duration of the project.

How is the town going to benefit from your project?
The project will provide a new, attractive open space (the ‘piazza’) and free access to St Patrick’s Chapel and courtyard during abbey opening times. Once the project is finished, we will be providing a programme of events for the piazza. Overall, it will improve Glastonbury’s cultural and heritage offer and we expect more visitors as a result, which will also benefit other businesses in the town.