Sweetheart Abbey is situated 7 miles south
of Dumfries, in the small village
of New Abbey, on the A710 road.
The Abbey is open 1 April to 30 September:
Monday to Sunday, 9.30am to 5.30pm, and 1
October to 31 March: Daily except Thursday and
Friday, 10am to 4pm. Small entry fee.
Sweetheart Abbey is situated at the south
side of New Abbey village, as seen top right,
with the Abbey Cottage Tearoom
next to the abbey.
The New Abbey Corn Mill and
Abbey Arms Hotel are
on the north side of the village, with the corn
mill another top attraction in the area.
1275 - Sweetheart Abbey was a Cistercian
monastery originally named Abbey of Dulce Cor,
Latin for Sweet Heart.
The Abbey was founded by Lady Dervorguilla
in memory of her husband, Baron John de
Dervorguilla was the daughter of the
wealthy Alan, Lord of Galloway.
1268 - Baron John de Balliol died when he
was about 60 years old. Lady Dervorguilla then
kept his embalmed heart in a casket of ivory
and silver until she died in 1290.
The casket was buried alongside her in her
tomb inside the Abbey.
Their son John was king
of Scotland from 1292 to 1296. He was accused
of being controlled by the English, leading to
the Wars of Scottish Independence, and him
being forced to abdicate.
The Reformation in 1560 led to the end of
Catholic worship in Scotland. This led to the
Abbey, as with most others in Scotland at the
time, being run down and much of the stonework
being taken for town or farm buildings.
It is surprising these impressive Abbeys
were not converted to Protestant churches.
1779 - locals set about preserving what was
left of the Abbey to serve as a monument for
the area. Driving through the village, the
Abbey looks vast, towering above the little
1928 - Historic Environment Scotland took
over the Abbey to serve as a tourist