Home – Launceston Priory

We welcome you to the website of the Friends of Launceston Priory; Kowetha Priorji Lanstefan. 

The Priory was lost for hundreds of years.

Launceston’s Mediaeval Priory was rediscovered in the 1880’s when workmen were constructing the new railway line through Launceston for the London and South Western Railway.

The Priory ruins we see today are all that remain of the original Priory that was built in the Kensey Valley in 1127 although there was an earlier religious community on the hill at nearby St Stephen’s. In 1539 the Priory was sold because of the Dissolution of the Monasteries, it was eventually abandoned with the roof and stonework being robbed from it. The site became the town’s rubbish tip for a time. Archaeological digs have exposed the remaining stone work.

Our website, events and opportunities aim to explain and be a celebration of what we have learnt about the events that led up to Launceston’s Augustinian Priory, what was achieved while active, as well as the consequences of its downfall.

We hope that our information adds historical clarity to the inspiration, purpose, spirit, lifestyle and aftermath of the Priory. We also hope that everyone will find something of interest here.

Visitors are welcome.

This is the entrance gate to the Priory ruins. The sign is written in Cornish and Latin.
Photograph by John Ellacott.

The site is open during daylight hours throughout the year. There is an interpretation board and bench there. Contact us to inquire about a guided tour through our Contact tab. Dogs are not welcome in this consecrated site.

How to find Launceton’s Priory;

The Priory ruins are at 1 Riverside, Launceston, Cornwall, PL15 8DH, in the UK
behind the Church of St Thomas the Apostle (Saint Thomas Parish Church on the map).

John Ellacott took this photograph of what you will find at the site.
The visible remains of Launceston Priory which are a
small part of the original complex.

Data Protection.

Your contact details and contributions are protected by legislation. Have a look at our one page policy;

Acknowledgement and identification of contributors.

Many thanks goes to all our generous and knowledgeable contributors who have been identified on documents or photographs they have contributed as well as those individuals and organisations who have permitted links to their reports, web pages or web sites.

Quality Control.

It is the nature of collecting and collating information from a variety of contributors and sources that variations, contradictions, flaws, omissions and misinterpretations will be identified. We welcome constructive comment, through our contact tab, with the aim to improve and expand our website over time.

Website updates will be a work in progress through 2023.


The Priory ruins are now owned by Launceston Town Council. Grants have been received for its upkeep and archaeological works, with a condition being to set up a voluntary Friends Committee; we encourage people to visit the Priory by providing information, events and this website. Constitution_-_one_page (1)

We welcome your contact to; ask anything about this website or our events or to book a talk or guided walk; suggest ideas for our website or future events; offer to help with our ‘to be developed topics’ or to join our committee. Please use our Contact tab. Thank you. 😊