Rushen Abbey

Rushen Abbey has been many things.

Founded in the 10th century by the slightly-tricky-to-pronounce Óláfr Guðrøðarson as a daughter church of Furness Abbey and dissolved in the 16th century, it nearly became an asylum in the 19th century, was a much-loved destination in the early 20th century, renowned for tea dances, superb strawberries and cream, markets and - maybe surprisingly - was home to a very successful nightclub in the 1980s and 1990s (responsible, we can attest, for much morning-after fuzzy-headedness).

It's now a superbly-curated heritage attraction, focused largely on the archaeological investigations which have been ongoing for many years, whilst building a picture of the abbey and the surrounding area. The site has been designed to feature educational exhibits and games, very much with children in mind.

It's a lovely place to visit, and the gardens are ideal for a spot of quiet introspection whilst the kids run around like mad things. There's a small souvenir shop where you can get hot and cold drinks and biscuits.

We also love the walk along the banks of the lazy, shimmering Silverdale river, past the ancient Monks' Bridge, to Silverdale Glen. It's thoroughly beautiful.

Photo by Malost  CC BY-SA 3.0


There is plentiful car parking and wheelchair access throughout the site, although the gardens may provide some difficulty. There is a shop on site and accessible toilets.

Contact Details

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Opening Hours
Day of the Week Opening Hours
Monday 11am to 3pm
Tuesday closed
Wednesday closed
Thursday 11am to 3pm
Friday 11am to 3pm
Saturday 11am to 3pm
Sunday 11am to 3pm

There is an entrance charge.


Published: 18 May 2022

The information provided is correct at the time of publishing. Please check with the organisation involved for the most up to date information.