HAP are currently working on a project called Understanding Dunkeswell Abbey Church. This Victorian Church, hidden away amongst the ruins of Dunkeswell Abbey in the Blackdown Hills, has a very unusual history.

It was built by a family of women who poured their time and energy into mastering the craft skills needed to create architectural fixings. Using a large drawing room at their home as a workshop they produced stained glass windows, altars, reredoses, a font, a pulpit, a reading desk, capitalscorbels and furniture reconstituted from antique carvings.

For Women’s History Month we’ve written a blog for the Blackdown Hills AONB about these remarkable women: The Simcoe sisters: Victorian craftswomen in Dunkeswell.

If you’re interested in finding out more about the women of the Simcoe family, come along to our open day on May 7th.

Dunkeswell Abbey Church with the Abbey Ruins in foreground
Dunkeswell Abbey Church with the ruins of Dunkeswell Abbey in the foreground