Dale Abbey from Wikipedia

The Augustinian canons moved to Dale Abbey in 1162 from their previous home at Calke Abbey. A few years later they were replaced by Premonstratensian canons from Tupholme and finally, a few years after this, by another group of Premonstratensians from Welbeck. All these attempts failed, primarily due to the isolation of the area and the lack of good arable land amidst the thick woodlands. From around the year 1199, the Abbey became well established enough—and with the acquisition of further lands, tithes and other properties—to survive for the next 340 years. Although a relatively large establishment, the abbey was home to no more than 24 canons. The Abbey provided priests at Ilkeston, Heanor, Kirk Hallam and Stanton by Dale. The Abbey owned around 24,000 acres (97 km2) of land. Much would have been leased or rented out or used for grazing or for the production of produce for the residents of the Abbey.

In 1539, the Act of Dissolution brought an end to almost four centuries of monastic life in the Dale. The remains comprise a 40-foot-high chancel window. Excavations have shown the church to have possessed transepts 100 feet in length, a crossing tower, a cloister 85 feet square and a nave of unknown length. Some of the remains of the building can be found in houses around the village. The last Abbot of Dale Abbey, John Bebe, died in 1540.

Sir Francis Pole of Radbourne took possession of Dale Abbey. The furnishings and fittings were either gradually sold off or stripped out and installed in other churches. Morley Church became home to some of the stained and painted glass, floor tiles and an entire porchway. The ornately carved font cover was installed in St Andrew’s Church, Radbourne, while Chaddesden received a window frame. The font eventually found its way back to All Saints’ Church, Dale Abbey in 1884, and the slabs upon which the canons walked for so many centuries can be found in the grounds of the church at the Moravian Settlement at Ockbrook.

Dale Abbey is recorded as the site of the “Wedding of Allan-A-Dale”, the third of the stories of Robin Hood.

It is thought that the tenor bell of Derby Cathedral originally belonged to Dale Abbey, and was sold at the Dissolution of the Monasteries.

Dale Abbey Arch