In 1907 the ruins and neighbouring Abbey House were sold at public auction and the whole property was bought by Ernest Jardine from Nottingham who offered it to the Church of England at cost price.
The funds were raised by 1909 and on June 22 that year the Prince and Princess of Wales visited to celebrate the restoration of the abbey to the Church of England.
The charity preserves the fabric and grounds of Glastonbury Abbey ruins, provides education in the abbey’s religious and historic importance for the public benefit and uses the abbey to advance religion in accordance with the doctrines of the Church of England.
The origins of our own Glaston Centre Ltd are in 1978 when a Dutch couple, Willem and Helene Koppejan, bought retail properties at the foot of Glastonbury High Street, which they converted into a complex of shops and function rooms called The Glastonbury Experience. The shops had an ‘arts and crafts’ focus originally, although over the years this was to change, reflecting Glastonbury’s development as a centre for contemporary spirituality. Willem, sadly, was to die before the couple’s dreams were fully realised.
The Glastonbury Experience operated at a loss for several years, much of which was paid for from Helene’s private funds. In 1987, Helene met Barry Taylor, a management and financial consultant with a strong interest in spirituality. Barry put in place a management plan that turned the business around.