Thornton Abbey's enormous and ornate fortified gatehouse is the largest and amongst the finest in England. This North Lincolnshire tourist attraction is the ideal way to spend a day.
Thornton Abbey's impressive architecture reflects the abbey's history as one of Britain's richest Augustinian abbeys. The property is also amongst a handful of British abbeys that managed to survive the Suppression of the Monastries by becoming a secular college, until it was eventually closed in 1547. A house was then constructed behind the gatehouse in the 17th century, but sadly it was either dismantled or never completed.
Today you can discover the turbulent lives of its former residents and try to spot the local wildlife, the more modern inhabitants of the abbey ruins. To extend your visit to Thornton Abbey, why not also visit the nearby St Peter’s Church and unlock the Buried Lives exhibition.
Please note, livestock are likely to be present on the site and access path.
- The delightful oak staircase and interior room
- A chance to enjoy a picnic in the grounds
VISITORS PLEASE BE AWARE DUE TO LIVESTOCK WITH YOUNG ON THIS SITE DOGS ARE NOT PERMITTED. THANK YOU.
Access information for the site is listed below. For more information, or if you have particular access needs, please contact English Heritage before you visit. Please note that some facilities may require booking in advance.
- Braille Guides
- Braille Signage
- Wheelchair Access: Through a level short grassed field. Access to Gatehouse is up a staircase with rest points. Exhibition recreated in an accessible Interpretation Centre. Shop has a step down at the entrance.
- Disabled Parking: Abbey car park, one accessible parking space. Visitor needs to walk up driveway.
- Stairs: External staircase into the Gatehouse. Spiral staircase to exit the Gatehouse.
Eleven car parking spaces located directly outside the Gatehouse.
FOOD AND DRINK
Hot and cold drinks, and snacks available.
You are welcome to bring a picnic to enjoy in the grounds. There's plenty of grass to sit on, and there is a picnic area near the car park.
The site shop sells a selection of gifts, book, postcards and refreshments (hot and cold drinks, and light snacks).
Male and female toilets contain baby changing facilities.
Unfortunately dogs are not allowed in the grounds. Assistance dogs welcome.
An exhibition and graphic panels offer an insight into the abbey's history, including its career as the focus of huge Victorian Temperance rallies.
The ruins of the monastic buildings are surrounded by large grassed areas. There is plenty of room for children to run and play, but please do not climb on the ruins.
BABY CHANGING FACILITIES: Baby changing facilities available.
PUSH CHAIRS ALLOWED: Yes, but not in the Gatehouse due to access restrictions.
TOY / DRESSING UP BOX
Dressing-up box (monks' clothes) located in the Gatehouse.
INTERPRETATION FOR CHILDREN: Located in the Gatehouse.
COMMERCIAL PHOTOGRAPH AND FILMING
English Heritage welcomes amateur photographers to our sites and we hope you will share your pictures of your visit with us on social media.
If you are looking to use one of our sites for commercial, corporate or professional photography or as a filming location, please contact our filming team as soon as possible to check availability and acquire the relevant permissions and paperwork.
Due to the delicate nature of our sites, English Heritage does not permit drone flying from or over sites in our care, except by contractors or partners undertaking flights for a specific purpose, who satisfy stringent CAA criteria, have the correct insurances and permissions, and are operating under controlled conditions.
HOW TO REACH
18 miles North-East of Scunthorpe, on a road North of A160; 7 miles South-East of the Humber Bridge, on a road East of A1077
Postcode : DN39 6TU
Latitude : 53.654166
Longtitude : -0.311696
Stagecoach in Lincolnshire services 260, 360 pass the site
Thornton Abbey 1⁄4 mile
Entry without gift aid/with gift aid:
Child (5-17 years) £3.60/£4.00
Family (2 adults, up to 3 children) £15.60/£17.20
DN39 6TU Ulceby