Revisiting Warwick 59 Years Later

Posted: 13 February 2024

Copyright The Lord Leycester

As we celebrate our centenary year we have revisited articles from our annual journal to draw inspiration for our events programme, curating a series of activities for 2024 that we trust will captivate participants and serve as a tribute to our rich past.

The Grade I listed Lord Leycester Hospital is a medieval collection of buildings built to serve the town of Warwick and provide support to the poor.

The oldest building is the chapel, built in 1123. The characterful, half-timbered buildings were built by the medieval Guilds between 1385-1430, forming two great halls, living quarters and public buildings surrounding a courtyard. In 1571, Robert Dudley, 1st Earl of Leicester and favourite of Queen Elizabeth I, founded a community of Master and Brethren, providing a sanctuary for military veterans “maimed or hurt in the wars in service of the Queen’s majesty”. Since then, the Hospital has been home to over 400 people who have fought across the military services, including in the Battle of Waterloo, the Crimean War and both World Wars.

The Victorians undertook a major restoration of the site in 1850, and further work was carried out a hundred years later. Most recently, the Lord Leycester Hospital reopened in August 2023 following a £4.5 million restoration project to upgrade 1950’s heating and electricity, replace rotten beams, repair the wattle and daub, and create modern spaces for visitors to learn about the fascinating history.

In 1965 Historic Buildings & Places (then the Ancient Monuments Society) published ‘The Lord Leycester Hospital, Warwick’ by Rear Admiral S. A. Pears (Master of the Hospital) in our Transactions Vol 13, which was the anniversary address given by Rear Admiral S. A. Pears, C.B.E., Master of the Lord Leycester Hospital, at the 42nd Annual General Meeting of the Society, held in Warwick on 12th June, 1965. Now, as we celebrate our centenary, we are once again going back to Warwick to see how the site has changed 59 years later.

Join us in Warwick on Wednesday 20th March 2024 for a bespoke guided tour by the Master or read more about it in our Transactions Vol 13, 1965-66.

Book your ticket for this event here.

Copyright The Lord Leycester

Copyright The Lord Leycester