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“tranquility in itself”
Review of Finchale Priory

Finchale Priory
Ranked #10 of 60 things to do in Durham
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Remains of 13th century priory set in a bend of the river Wear and managed by English Heritage. The fee is actually a car park EXIT fee.
Useful Information: Food available for purchase, Activities for older children
Reviewed 4 July 2014

lovely and serene,nice to get back to nature and relax n destress.lovely walks,for all walks of life and your dogs.

4  Thank pixielynda68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"caravan park"
in 17 reviews
"english heritage"
in 13 reviews
"the river"
in 71 reviews
"touring caravan"
in 3 reviews
"ruined abbey"
in 3 reviews
"hour walk"
in 2 reviews
"nice tea shop"
in 2 reviews
"shower block"
in 2 reviews
"impressive ruins"
in 2 reviews
"guinea fowl"
in 2 reviews
"lovely setting"
in 7 reviews
"dog walkers"
in 4 reviews
"small cafe"
in 6 reviews
"playing hide and seek"
in 2 reviews
"shop on site"
in 2 reviews
"hidden gem"
in 9 reviews
"henry viii"
in 3 reviews
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158 - 162 of 197 reviews

Reviewed 3 July 2014

Set in lovely surroundings the old priory has succummbed to weather and age (dont we all). It has some lovely walks in the surrounding area and the scale of the place does make one consider its former glory.

2  Thank pchelper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 June 2014

Firstly, I am am English heritage member, which, for a substantial annual membership fee includes free admission and parking. a I am often touring round, I almost always have the car.

The site is dificult to find from the south/Durham/A167, with zero signposts. On another occasion i did see the signs when travelling into Durham from the North along A167, so I thought I'd call in. You pass a number of prisons by the way.

Approaching the site, you feel youre about to cross the German border. A host of threatening signs welcome you, park and pay up on departure or else, CCTV watching you, wheel clamping, if youre a canoeist why should we let you use the river etc., then you reach the barriers, all what was missing was a sentry shouting achtung halte.
So I turned around in the half metre widening of the road, to undoubtedly cater for many more simular to myself.

Very dissapointed, and suprised that English Heritage collaborates with this practice. Have written to them directly to complain about the issue.
Will investigate alternate means of access such as riverside paths, uness these have been landmined at the perimeters.

5  Thank ChilliAndGarlic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
godrica, Next to priory, caravan manager at Finchale Priory, responded to this reviewResponded 3 September 2014

I would like to point out that we only open and close the gate of the Priory, we also police the Priory if there are any unruly youths climbing the walls.

We are separate from the Priory owning the land around the gated Area and our main income is the caravan park

We note that a few people have issues with the parking fee, the fee covers quite a few things (as it is private land we do not get any grants and every thing we provide for a all day fee of £3 ) maintenance of the roads , beautiful mowed lawns Picnic tables, Toilet facilities, cafe ,access to the river bank and most of all the peace and tranquilly Finchale has to offer

We do get the very obnoxious customer ( I guess this is where the beware of custodian come in ) when I am working in the shop and some person starts being abusive to me and my staff sorry we will not just stand and take it .

Finchale is a fabulous little gem we are very lucky to work here as I am told many many times in a day, by very very nice people from all over the world.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 June 2014

Located beside a shallow fast moving river, this site is rather large, but interesting to wander through. It is a private road and there is a 3:00GBP parking fee minimum.

1  Thank Gladesville22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 28 May 2014

We visited this lovely little priory recently when travelling through Durham.
The priory is situated next to a caravan park,but is also by the river Wear which is lovely.
Unfortunately as there were no information boards around the ruins,we were unable to find out what part of the abbey we were actually standing in.However we just enjoyed taking photographs and wandering through the ruins.
There is a lovely walk over the footbridge that goes alongside the river,we didn"t do it all but i can imagine that it is lovely to do if the weather is good.
This is a lovely little priory but the downside is the £3 car parking fee even if you are English Heritage members,the fee has to be paid as you need the receipt to let you out through the barrier.
It is also confusing of where you are to park as it is not well sign posted and you are not allowed beyond the sign for the caravan park.
Now i have visited this abbey i don"t think it is a place i would hurry back to visit again.

2  Thank PhilfromCheshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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