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Westminster Abbey and Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The Abbey remains open for worship and you are welcome to join us at our daily Eucharist service if you are able to travel here safely within current government guidelines.

However, for the time being we are unable to open the Abbey and St Margaret’s Church for general visiting.

Richard Harweden

Richard Harweden was Abbot of Westminster from 1420 until his resignation in 1440. He died in mid 1441. He was at the Abbey from 1398 and was one of the treasurers of the money given by Henry V for the rebuilding of the western part of the nave of Westminster Abbey. Also he acted as treasurer of the manors given by Queen Eleanor of Castile and was Warden of the New Work in 1413, when he was associated with Dick Whittington in the rebuilding works.

His grave is traditionally said to be at the foot of the stairs in the south ambulatory which now lead up to Henry VII's chapel. On the south side is a large Purbeck marble slab on which was originally a brass with a mitred figure and this is thought to be his stone. Dean Stanley in the late 19th century inserted a floor stone for him in the chapel of St John the Baptist where previous abbots had been buried and where he also may have been buried. But as records do not give any precise location it is not possible to say where his actual grave is located.

The head of a wooden crozier from his period is now on display in the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Galleries at the Abbey.

Occupation

Abbot

Location

South Ambulatory

Richard Harweden
Richard Harweden modern memorial stone

This image can be purchased from Westminster Abbey Library

Image © 2021 Dean and Chapter of Westminster

Richard Harweden
Crozier of an abbot

This image can be purchased from Westminster Abbey Library

Image © 2021 Dean and Chapter of Westminster

Related commemorations

It’s very hard not to be enthusiastic working at the Abbey. If this place doesn’t make you smile I don’t know what will.

Valerie - Foundation Director

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