About Talley Abbey (Cadw)
Talley was founded in the 1180s by Rhys ap Gruffydd (‘The Lord Rhys’, native ruler of the south Wales kingdom of Deheubarth) for the monks of the Premonstratensian order. This was the first and only abbey in Wales for the Premonstratensians, monks who were also known as the ‘White Canons’ from the colour of their habit.
The church tower, standing almost to its full height, is the most impressive feature of the ruined abbey, which never enjoyed the wealth and success of the Cistercian religious settlements – quite widespread throughout Wales – that inspired it. Lack of funds meant that the church was never fully completed, though the outline of the footings demonstrates the scale and ambition of its design. The ruins stand in an idyllic setting beside Talley’s twin lakes.