Founded in the year 1127 by Stephen, then count of Boulogne and Mortain and lord of Lancaster.
The grant comprised the whole of the forest and demesne of Furness, Walney Island, the manor of Ulverston, the land of Roger Bristwald, the count’s fishery in the Lune by Lancaster, and Warin the Little with his land.
The land of Michael le Fleming in Furness was excepted, but this limitation to the completeness of the abbot’s sway in the peninsula was removed early in the reign of Henry III.
From the first the abbey was under the special protection of the crown. Its rights and privileges were confirmed and enlarged by nearly every king from Henry I to Henry IV.