Tintern Abbey was founded in c.1200 by William Marshall, the 1st Earl of Pembroke and ‘the greatest knight that ever lived’. Marshal, who had set sail for Ireland on his first visit as Lord of Leinster was threatened with shipwreck during a bad storm and vowed to found an abbey wherever he could safely land. On reaching Bannow Bay, he redeemed his vow and bequeathed 9000 acres of land for it’s foundation and it quickly became one of the richest Cistercian abbeys in Ireland. It was colonised by monks from Tintern Abbey in Monmouthshire,Wales (hence the name) which Marshal was also patron. After the Dissolution of the Monasteries the abbey and its grounds were granted to Sir James Croft, and then to Anthony Colclough, a soldier of Henry VIII whose descendants became the Colclough Baronets. The final member of the Colclough family to reside here was Lucey Marie Biddulph Colclough who donated the abbey to the nation. It is now under state control and the remains are still fairly intact and open to the public as a visitor attraction.

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