It was founded as a monastery in 680 AD, by a son of Penda of Mercia. The abbey became wealthy and powerful, until a Viking attack in 874. Another monastery, and town, was re-established here in the 11th Century by Leofric Earl of Mercia and his wife Lady Godiva.
Today, Much Wenlock is known for its charming architecture, history, and pictaresuqe downtown area and shopfronts. It is also known as the birthplace of the modern Olympic games.
People Born in Much Wenlock
Much Wenlock in People's Lives
Henry James: I traveled here in 1877 to visit a friend of mine, who lived in the historic Wenlock Abbey in this town. The dark, romantic abbey enchanted me, and made a lasting impression. From then on, I would frequently include mysterious abbeys in my writings. Behind the abbey here were some gloomy, overgrown fish ponds, which inspired the ominous lake in one of my most famous pieces, The Turn of the Screw.