St John's Abbey, Colchester

The buildings of St John's Abbey were laid out in 1095 by Eudo Dapifer and the first of them completed in 1115. The cloister and domestic buildings lay north of the church, as a small hill occupied the land to the south. The abbey was burnt down in 1133 and all the workshops, which were originally on the north side were rebuilt to the south side of the church. The church was re-built on a cruciform plan, with a massive central tower and an elaborate west front flanked by south-west and north-west towers, possibly round. Late 12th century capitals, perhaps from the internal jambs of a window or from blind arcading, found near the abbey site, may have been from its church or chapter house. The abbey was dissolved in 1538.