A Garden, A Statue and Two Statues For Cirencester

As you take your constitutional through the Abbey Grounds, watch out for activity on the southern boundary, as the Abbot’s Garden, part of the Abbey 900 Legacy Project gets under way with the erection of a pergola and the beginning of planting.  Plans are coming together and work should start very soon.

Abbot and Canon

The monastic garden has been developed by Martin Portus of Portus & Whitton Ltd, a member of the Abbey 900 Legacy Advisory team and plants will be those that might have been found in a monastery garden in the 1500s and mostly would have been for medicinal purposes.  Interpretation panels will be part of the pergola installation and it will be a sensory garden to appeal to all in the community.

Later in the summer you will see the installation of a carved wooden statue representing an Abbot and Canon by the balustrade. The Abbot is discussing plans with one of his canons; possibly for the Abbey garden, or for extensions to the Abbey, or work to the Parish Church?  You can wonder which!


If you have been reading your Cirencester Scene, you will be aware of Project Black Jack, the initiative to replace statues of St John the Baptist and the Virgin and Child that stood in niches on the church tower and have been missing for many years.  It is known that the “Black Jack” statue was removed in 1963 for safety reasons. For more on Project Black Jack visit https://projectblackjack.org.uk/

Virgin and Child

Maquette of Virgin and Child Statue

Maquettes of the proposed sculptures by Rodney Munday can be seen in the Parish Church of St John Baptist.

The statues will be installed by Sunday September 5 2021, when they will be dedicated by Rachel Treweek, the Bishop of Gloucester.

Bishop Rachel was Patron of the Abbey 900 Festival 2017 and will dedicate the Abbot’s Garden Project on the same day.

Corinne Lamus

For Abbey 900 Legacy Fund Advisory Team

Tel:- 01285 644244/07970 926747

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