Dundrennan Abbey is situated in the very
small village of Dundrennan in Dumfries and
Galloway southwest Scotland, 54 miles east of
Stranraer, 26 miles southwest of
Dumfries, 6 miles southeast of
The Abbey has a small fee to enter, open
from 1st April to 30th September, 9.30 to
Dundrennan Abbey was a Cistercian monastery
founded in 1142 by Fergus of Galloway, with
help from monks of Rievaulx Abbey in Yorkshire.
King David I of Scotland (1124–53) contributed
to the build.
The remains of the Abbey are impressive with
the high transepts, stated to be built in
Romanesque architectural style, although there
are a number of Gothic features.
Viewing the remains of the Abbey, you will
see a number of features seen in the largest
city Gothic Cathedrals, an incredible building
for such a remote and low populated area.
Dundrennan was the largest Cistercian Abbey
in Dumfries and Galloway, having power over the
smaller Glenluce Abbey founded in 1191, and
Sweetheart Abbey founded in 1273.
1568 - Mary, Queen of Scots spent her final
night in Scotland at this Abbey, after being
forced to abdicate so her infant son could
become king of Scotland.
Mary, Queen of
Scots left from here to travel to England,
where she was imprisoned and executed in
Mary had bean accused of murdering her
husband Lord Darnley when living at Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh,
and trying to overthrow Queen Elizabeth of
England after moving to England.
1560 - during the reformation, John Knox
founded the Church of Scotland under
Presbyterian Protestantism, with the head of
these churches being Scottish Elders.
All Abbey's in Scotland and England were
abandoned around that time as the Reformation
prevented Catholic preaching's based on the
Pope in Rome.
The Reformation in England was led by King
Henry VIII from 1534, with the King or Queen
being the head of English churches since.
Much of the stone from the Abbey was used
for buildings in the village of Dundrennan, and
the remains of the Abbey were used to house
1842 - the Abbey was taken into state care
so the remains could be preserved to serve as a
Today - Historic Environment Scotland runs
the Abbey with a number ornate grave stones,
and carved stones from the main building on
The foundations and remains give the sense
of how large this complex was, at a time people
were living in tiny thatch roofed