Merton Priory

Merton Priory is where St Thomas à Becket and Nicholas Breakespear (who became Pope) trained. The canons founded thirteen "daughter" priories, one was Holyrood built on the plan of St Mary's Abbey, Merton. The first abbot of Holyrood was Alwyn a canon from Merton Priory. He returned there after twenty two years. 


Sixty churches came under Merton Priory’s care and Merton College was founded from Merton Priory by Walter de Merton. Merton College’s “rule” was based on the Augustinian rule practised at
Merton, this became known as the Collegiate System also copied at other Oxford and Cambridge colleges.

Magna Carta was refined at Merton Priory becoming the premier statute for the United Kingdom known as the Eleven Statutes of Merton. These may be seen in the House of Lords.

Merton is where Henry III was married and where he had his own apartments. State occasions and conferences were held there and the kings visited regularly.

Without Merton Priory it is impossible to make sense of our history.



Location of Merton Priory