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Isle of Wight monks 'thrilled' at WMF listing

Mon 10 Oct 2011

Isle of Wight monks 'thrilled' at WMF listing

Isle of Wight monks are "thrilled" with the news Quarr Abbey on the island has been put on a prestigious list by the World Monuments Fund (WMF).

Father Luke Bell stated that the move by the organisation will increase the chances of the monks being able to secure the necessary money to repair the building.

Speaking to BBC News, he explained that a grant of between £1.6 million and £1.9 million has been applied for from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

But Father Bell conceded that even if the cash is given to Quarr Abbey, it is not likely to be enough to complete all of the necessary work on the Isle of Wight building.

He said: "The church on the site in particular is built by a monk architect - Dom Paul Bellot - and there's a really strong sense of presence of God in that church."

The WMF added Quarr Abbey - which dates back to the 12th century - on its latest list of buildings, along with surprise choices such as Preston Bus Station.

Its report called for awareness to increase regarding the urgent need for repairs to the site.

The listing of Quarr Abbey on the Isle of Wight will "hopefully help to garner support for the repair, maintenance and management of the structures, as well as improve visitor facilities and public engagement" according to the organisation.

Quarr Abbey's website states that the abbey church ot the site was created around 100 years ago and wounded soldiers were treated at the Isle of Wight building during the Great War.

Monks who live at the location wake at 04:50 BST in the morning before carrying out a full day of duties including mass, reading scriptures, sorting out the laundry and cooking.

Guests are able to take tours of Quarr Abbey during their Isle of Wight holidays, but these trips must be booked in advance.

Posted by Steph WhiteADNFCR-3083-ID-800753216-ADNFCR

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