Abbey house is a late Tudor house situated in the heart of Malmesbury, tucked away behind the Market Cross and adjacent to the Abbey. It overlooks the River Avon to the North and surrounding the house are the wonderful gardens and grounds which create a remarkable and private setting. The house is Grade I listed and predominantly built of stone under render with a stone slate cross-gable roof. The principle elevation has gables with roll top coping and ball finials to the outer wings. The house is roughly a horseshoe shape with a more modern extension extending to the eastern side.
Internally the house provides intriguing accommodation together with features one would expect of a property of such age. These include stone mullion windows, exposed stonework, impressive fireplaces, fine solid wood doors and a wonderful oak main staircase with feature carved newels. There is also a 16th Century solid oak winder staircase.
Accommodation: The house is steeped in history offering complete individuality, character and charm as well as generous accommodation. All of the principle rooms enjoy the spectacle of the gardens. The rooms are laid out to include a splendid grand reception hall off which rises the principle staircase. Adjacent is the library (at one time two rooms), a splendid entertaining room with an array of finely carved bookshelves. From here a door leads into a side porch which at one time was used as the main entrance.
On the opposite side of the reception hall is the drawing room and of particular historical note is the over mantel with strap work and caryatids above which is the coat of arms of the Ivy family. Close by is the generous kitchen/breakfast room which includes a large feature Stone fireplace (currently not in use), believed to date back to pre-1260 and part re-built. Doorways from the kitchen lead to the studio which includes a study and domestic office space.
Onwards from the studio and extending off the eastern side of the house is the belvedere, which is used in connection with garden visitors where refreshments are served from a second kitchen. This wonderful light and airy space enjoys bi-folding doors opening up to a large raised decked terrace with a glass balustrade. It is also used for wedding receptions, being a short stroll from the abbey, and indeed the whole property can be used in connection with wedding parties.
On the lower ground floor of Abbey House is the oldest room in the house known as the Abbots Hall, which is believed to have been built by Abbot William Colene between 1260-1296 and is half the size of what would have been the original ‘Great Hall’. It features springs of an early English rib vault and octagonal columns.
The lower ground floor also includes a cloakroom area with two WC’s, a games room, wine store and pantry with cold slabs.
The first floor provides five bedrooms, all of which are a good size, in fact the bedroom in the west wing was in fact three rooms which have been opened up to form one large room. There is a family bathroom and further bathroom which has not been completed. A living room/kitchen creates the opportunity of a self-contained suite. An independent staircase leads to a private roof terrace.
On the second floor is what the current owners refer to as the ‘bridal suite’ for wedding parties. It includes two bedrooms, one of which is known as the ‘bridal’ bedroom, kitchenette and shower room. The winder staircase leads to four further double bedrooms with a connecting door from one to the ‘bridal suite’, and three additional attic rooms are accessed from a further independent staircase.