Once a convent for Benedictine Nuns, of which 18 came to England destitute in 1784 to escape persecution and the ravages of the French Revolution. Many years later and under the auspices and encouragement of Dom (a title given to Benedictine monks) Augustine Lawson these nuns settled at Stanbrook during 1838.
The Abbey church was completed in 1871 to the designs of Edward Welby Pugin, of Houses of Parliament fame, in Gothic Revival style. The chief foundress was 17 year old Helen More, professed as Sister Gertrude More, she was the great great granddaughter of Sir Thomas More, who was beheaded in1535 on the instructions of Henry VIII: her father Cresacre More provided the endowment for the foundation of the monastery.
Stanbrook Abbey was celebrated for its traditions of Gregorian chant, devotional literature and fine printing. The Stanbrook Abbey Press was at one time the oldest private press in England, and acquired an international reputation for fine print.
The nuns announced in April 2002 that they would be moving from their Victorian abbey of 79,000 sq ft of monastic buildings to make best use of its human and financial resources. Construction on a new abbey to be built at Cress Farm located close to Wass in the North York Moors National Park began in June 2007, the community moved to the new Stanbrook Abbey at Wass on the 21st May 2009.
Now the original Stanbrook Abbey has been given a new lease of life and stands proud as a 21st century hotel and events centre. Whilst the front of this amazing structure has remained more or less unchanged the same cannot be said of the rear where extensive alterations have taken place in a very sympathetic but modern style,
These extensions not only provide an increase to the existing conference facilities but have also created a modern reception area, plus a new first floor dining room with an outdoor extension (weather permitting) overlooking the grounds of the hotel. Also incorporated within this development is the new Saint George’s bar, no self-respecting hotel would be without one.
The Hotel is full of interesting facts for example – The Thompson Dining Room is named after the famous mouse carpenter Robert Thompson better known as The Mouseman. He left his mark at Stanbrook Abbey in the Thompson Dining Room by constructing in 1933 a wooden raised pulpit and surrounding panels, the mouse is still there for all to see.
From this room the Benedictine nuns have taken with them to Yorkshire 80 chairs and 14 refectory tables designed by the famous architect Robert Crush and made by Robert Thompson in 1926. That’s a lot of mice.
Currently the hotel has 52 beautiful bedrooms, 19 function rooms and state that conferences up to 300 delegates are well within their capabilities. Set in a lovely 26 acre estate overlooking the Malvern Hills ideal for team building courses or simply to enjoy using the Hotel’s Segway’s as a mode of travelling.
Stanbrook Abbey is without doubt an Interesting Venue, we suggest you see for yourselves.