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      St laurence's church

The church of St Laurence was built by the Abbey to serve as the Parish Church for the people of the east of Reading. It was extensively rebuilt in 1196 and again in the fifteenth century. Its north aisle was used by those in the Abbey's old people's home to the north of the church. This almshouse looked after elderly men and women of the town, 13 of each, who had fallen on hard times in their old age. This church had no graveyard round it in Abbey times and townspeople were buried to the north of the Abbey Church. The present graveyard was set out and opened after the Dissolution when the previous townsfolk graveyard was no longer used after the Abbey church was pulled down.

This is the only building of the abbey which is still used as it was in abbey days. It was restored in Victorian times and little original mediaeval materials remain.

Copyright Reading Museum Service from "Reading Abbey", published by Reading Museum & Art Gallery 1988.

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