The magnificent ruins of Valle Crucis Abbey are to found on the outskirts of the popular resort town of Llangollen in the valley of the Eglwyseg River in Denbighshire, North Wales. Valle Crucis, or the 'Valley of the Cross', is named after Eliseg's Pillar, a 9th century Christian memorial cross which stands nearby. The ruins lie in green fields beneath Llangollen's steep sided mountains and in medieval times this was a remote spot.
The Cistercian Abbey was founded by Madog ap Gruffydd Maelor in 1201,
when twelve monks took occupation of a temporary wooden church and
immediately began construction of roughly faced rubble buildings. By the
time of the death of the Abbey’s patron in 1236 extensive work had been
completed, but stained masonry and extensive rebuilding attest to a
severe fire some time after this date. Repairs began promptly, with the
later work distinguishable by its smaller, flatter stones. Further major
rebuilding exercises took place in the mid-fourteenth and early
fifteenth centuries. Following its dissolution in 1538 the east range
was adapted as a mansion and occupied until about 1654. It was then in
use as a farmhouse from 1800 to 1850, before falling into decay.