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The Bar Convent

Heritage Centre

The Bar Convent, 17 Blossom Street, York, YO24 1AQ

Tel: 01904 643238

The Bar Convent

About

The story of The Bar Convent begins with a secret.

In 1686, a time of great danger for all Catholics in England, a woman named Frances Bedingfield purchased a small parcel of land just outside York's walls. She signed the deed under an alias. The ladies who then lived and worked beneath the building's dull slate roof wore slate-coloured gowns, and called themselves the 'Ladies of the Bar'.

Nobody knew the truth they concealed. For the early sisters of The Bar Convent, discovery meant punishment - and even death.

Over the three centuries that followed, the Community were no strangers to strife. Their home has been at times a school, a hospital ward, a refuge and a bomb-site, emerging into the present day in its current guise: the Living Heritage Centre. Every corner of the building has a tale to tell.

Brand new for 2015, our state-of-the-art Exhibition will inspire you with the story of the Bar Convent, told through the latest audio-visual technology and interactive displays.

Discover three hundred years of history and the remarkable people who have shaped it. Meet the radical Yorkshire nun and pioneer Mary Ward, whose devotion to her cause took her on foot across the Alps - twice. Learn about secrets and spies, angry mobs and Luftwaffe bombs. Hide yourself away inside a priest hole - then find out how to hide an entire chapel.

The Bar Convent Cafe

The Bar Convent Café is the perfect place to meet family, friends or colleagues or just to escape the bustle of the city centre and enjoy a spot of lunch. Our licensed cafe offers main meals, daily specials and mouthwatering desserts.


The Bar Convent Gift Shop

Stocked with a wide range of delightful gifts and souvenirs including cards, jewellery, fairtrade chocolate, books and scarves, The Bar Convent Gift Shop is perfect for that special present… or special treat!

The Bar Convent Guided Tours

Discover the secrets of England's oldest living convent. Founded in 1686 and still home to religious sisters today, the Grade I Listed 18th-century buildings house an Exhibition, award-winning Café & Guest House plus Conference facilities.

Book Tickets Online

Opening Times

* Closed Christmas & Easter

Guide Prices

Family ticket includes 2 adults and 2 children, with up to four extra children allowed at an additional £1 each. Concessions includes OAPs and students with valid ID. Children under the age of six are free.

Facilities

Accessibility

  • Disabled access
  • Disabled toilets

Booking & Payment Details

  • Credit cards accepted (no fee)

Catering

  • On-site catering
  • On-site light refreshments
  • Picnic site

Children

  • Baby changing facilities
  • Children welcome

Groups

  • Facilities for educational visits

Meeting, Conference & Wedding Facilities

  • Facilities for conferencing
  • Facilities for corporate hospitality

Property Facilities

  • Dogs not accepted (except guidedogs)
  • Gift shop
  • Public toilets
  • Smoking not allowed

Target Markets

  • Accepts groups
  • Coach parties accepted

Awards

  • Yorkshire AwardsYork Tourism Awards Finalist York Tourism Awards Finalist 2016
  • Yorkshire AwardsYork Pass Accepted York Pass Accepted 2018

Road Directions

Turn right out of York Rail Station and the convent is opposite Micklegate Bar - no more than a five minute walk.

Park & Ride:
With six cleverly located sites surrounding the city centre getting into York has never been easier. www.yorkparkandride.co.uk

The nearest railway station is York Station, which is 1 mile away.

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