Nun, 79, creates huge Buckfast Abbey mural

Mother Joanna Jamieson
Image caption Mother Joanna Jamieson used photos from the abbey's archives to help produce the mural

A 79-year-old nun's huge mural of the rebuilding of a Devon abbey's church will be unveiled later.

The work, which measures 26ft (7.9m) by 18ft (5.4m), has been painted by Mother Joanna Jamieson, former Abbess of Stanbrook Abbey in Worcestershire,

Buckfast Abbey church of St Mary's, which was rebuilt by the monks, is getting a makeover to mark the abbey's millennium in 2018.

The mural shows the monks rebuilding the abbey church between 1907 and 1939.

Image copyright Buckfast abbey trust
Image caption Monks in their robes are shown rebuilding the abbey's church in archive photos
Image copyright Buckfast Abbey Trust
Image caption The abbey's church was rebuilt over a period of more than 30 years
Image copyright Buckfast Abbey Trust
Image caption Monks work on the church's window arches
Image caption The church today dominates the abbey and local area

Photographs taken at the time show them toiling in their robes without a safety hard hat in sight.

Mother Joanna, who trained at Glasgow School of Art, used photos from the abbey's archives which show the monks hammering, chiselling and hauling loads of masonry to create the mural.

Lead workers, stonemasons, coppersmiths, glaziers and conservators have been renovating the church, which is the centrepiece of the 11th Century Buckfast Abbey.

The mural will be unveiled on behalf of Buckfast Abbey by Catherine Goodman, the artistic director of the Prince's Drawing School in Hoxton, London.

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