Benjamin Brecknell Turner (1815-1894)
'Abbey Church, Pershore'
Albumen Print from paper negative
Museum no. PH.8-1982
© Victoria and Albert Museum, London
Today, like most English churches, Pershore Abbey is stripped of its ivy. The pinnacles added to the tower in 1871 and two large flying buttresses, constructed in 1913 to shore up the increasingly unstable crossing and tower, significantly alter its appearance from Turner's photograph.
Structural problems have been recorded for much of the history of the Abbey church at Pershore. After the dissolution of the monastery in 1539, the townspeople purchased the east end of the church as their place of worship for £400 and the nave was demolished, weakening the building. The ivy on the south transept cannot have helped the state of the fabric, which was a growing cause of concern following the collapse of the north transept in 1686. The Abbey was restored by Sir George Gilbert Scott between 1862 and 1864.