Glastonbury Abbey in Somerset is one of the most important medieval heritage sites in the UK, and has been the focus of archaeological study since the 19th century.
The abbey holds a special place in English identity and popular culture. In the middle ages it was reputed to be the burial place of the legendary King Arthur and his queen Guinevere, and was regarded as the site of the earliest church in Britain, thought to have been founded by Joseph of Arimathea. According to the Gospels, Joseph was the man who had donated his own tomb for the body of Christ following the crucifixion.
These stories have been connected with Glastonbury for nearly a thousand years and still have popular appeal and spiritual value today to groups including the Church of England, the Catholic Church and Glastonbury’s diverse New Age ‘Community of Avalon’.