Norton Priory, a Grade I listed building, situated near Runcorn, was a priory and later an abbey, established as an Augustinian foundation by William Fitz Nigel, 2nd Baron of Halton in the twelfth century.
The foundations of Norton Priory
The abbey was largely demolished following the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1536. The site now exists as a museum and tourist attraction.
Operated by a charitable trust, the Museum and Gardens are open to the public. The fascinating museum features a history of the site and some of the artefacts discovered during archeological excavations that took place there, including a medieval stone coffin. The medieval statue of Saint Christopher has been restored and it forms the centrepiece of a display in the museum. The priory even has an "original" bell - c cast from its clay mould, which was found in the excavations.
Norman Doorway in the Undercroft
The undercroft is all that now remains of the original buildings, (with a Victorian addition) but the foundations of the abbey and the monastery are clearly visible.
The walled garden at the priory includes the national collection of tree quinces. There is also a medieval herb garden. A regular programme of events is organised throughout the year.