‘England’s most perfect almshouse’
(Simon Jenkins: England’s Thousand Best Churches)
Welcome to the Hospital of St Cross & Almshouse of Noble Poverty
For details of events take a look at the What’s On page.
Now available in the Porter’s Lodge Shop! The new bespoke Hospital of St Cross bone china mug by Alison Gardiner. For more information on the Porter’s Lodge Shop and opening times please visit our What’s On page.
Notice to Visitors: Visitors are advised that on occasional days there may be some areas of the Hospital that are closed to the public due to private events. Wherever possible notice will be given to advise of any restrictions; please visit the Opening Times page for details.
Church Tower Repairs – Major repair work to St Cross Church tower will commence on 12 August 2013. Scaffolding will be erected around the Church tower, internally and externally, for approximately 4 months. Outside the dates listed below, the Church will be open to visitors and for services, but the area below the Church tower will not be available for use and will be protected by screens.
Monday, 18 to Friday, 29 November 2013 – St Cross Church (only) CLOSED to visitors
Nestling in the water meadows alongside the River Itchen and in the shadow of St Catherine’s Hill lies the ancient Hospital of St Cross. Reknowned for the tranquillity of its setting and the beauty of its architecture, the Hospital is one of England’s oldest continuing almshouses.
These fine medieval buildings have provided food and shelter for hundreds of years. The principal activity of the Hospital continues to be the provision of individual, private apartments for a living community of about twenty-five elderly men. Known as ‘Brothers’ they wear black or red gowns and a trencher hat for daily church and other formal occasions.
At the heart of the Hospital’s inner quadrangle is a wonderful Norman church, its tower, chancel, transepts and nave soaring so high that it looks like a cathedral in miniature. Nearby stand a classic medieval hall and kitchen, as well as a Tudor cloister, with another ancient hall in the outer quad that serves as a tea room. The extensive gardens are immaculately maintained throughout the year.
To the surprise of many, and despite it being a place of privacy and even retreat, visitors are welcome to St Cross. The Church is perfect for traditional weddings: this extends beyond the parish to the wider community, for whom baptisms and memorial services may also be conducted. All depend upon the agreement of the Master of St Cross. Other areas may also be hired for private events.
Please use the other areas of this website for your own further information and contact us to enquire about your special interests.
The Hospital of St Cross and Almshouse of Noble Poverty
St Cross Road, Winchester
Tel: 01962 878218