Beautiful 14th and 15th century timber-framed buildings clustered around the Norman gateway into Warwick. For nearly 200 years the buildings were the base for Warwick’s medieval guilds before they became a rest home for retired servicemen which they remain today.
The historic group of buildings that now comprise the Hospital, is now dominated by the ancient Chantry Chapel of St James, built over the West Gate into Warwick by Thomas Beauchamp, 12th Earl of Warwick, in the latter half of the 14th Century.
The Guild of St George was created under a license issued by King Richard II on 20th April, 1383, and Thomas Beauchamp granted the benefice of the Chantry Chapel to the Guild on its formation. Sometime between 1386 and 1413, the Guild of the Blessed Virgin, based at the Collegiate Church of St Mary, joined the Guild of St George at the West Gate. To accommodate the resident priests and the guilds, reception, meeting and dining halls were built as well as living quarters. They became known as the United Guilds of Warwick.
In 1546, when they were dispersed by King Henry VIII, the United Guilds were able to save their property from seizure through the admirable foresight of their Master, Thomas Oken, who had it transferred to the Burgesses of Warwick.
In 1571, Robert Dudley, Earl of Leycester acquired the buildings and founded, under charter from Queen Elizabeth I, a Hospital for aged or disabled soldiers and their wives. The Charter set up a corporation consisting of the Master in charge of the Hospital and the twelve resident Brethren, which was endowed with estates producing an income of £200 per year. To accommodate them, parts of the buildings, including the Guildhall itself, were divided into primitive quarters. These arrangements remained unchanged until 1950, when the Guildhall was cleared and the number of Brethren temporarily reduced to five.
The Brethren’s Kitchen, our 500 year old Cafe, is now open! We have moved the Cafe to the Great Hall for your safety. Please enter the Cafe via the main entrance of the Lord Leycester on the High Street.
The Brethren’s Kitchen opens Tuesday through Sunday 10am – 4pm and closes on Mondays, except Bank Holidays.
There is no need to book at the moment but please be prepared to enter your name in the log and follow the recommended Government social distancing guidelines.
Adult Ticket: £8.50
Concession Ticket: £6.50 (Student/Senior)
Child’s Ticket: £5.00 (Ages 5-18. Children under 5 enter free)
Family Ticket: £20.00 (2 adults and up to 3 three children)
Garden Only Ticket: £2.00
Garden Season Ticket: £15.00
Summer timings: 28th March 2021- 31 October 2021.
Open from 10am – 5pm
(Last tickets of the day sold at 4.30pm, doors close at 5pm)
Winter timings: 31st October 2021 – 27th March 2022.
Open from 10am – 4pm
(Last tickets of the day sold at 3.30pm, doors close at 4pm)