What’s on

Family, familyfun

Meet Queen Elizabeth I

31st May - 1st June 2022 | 10:15am - 4:30pm

Queen Elizabeth I has arrived at the Charterhouse on the way to her coronation. Celebrate the Platinum Jubilee with us and enjoy an audience with the future Queen, as a costumed interpreter from Spectrum Drama brings her to life in her first throne room, our Great Chamber. But, don’t forget, the house needs to look it’s best — from food to laundry, dress to décor, lend a hand to ensure the Charterhouse is fit for a queen! Each session lasts 45mins. Dates and Times: 31st May, 10.15-11am & 1st June, 3.45-4.30pm. Appropriate for children ages 5-11. Children £10 each, adults FREE!  Book your ticket here
art history, design, history, interiors

Our new Historic Interiors tour

We are excited to introduce a new tour this year. The Historic Interiors Tour takes a closer and more detailed look at the evolution of the design of our buildings and rooms over the centuries, and our unique collection of artworks, including our stunning Flemish 17th Century tapestries which are not on view in any other tour. Book now for this fascinating new tour.  

Gardens, Spring, summer, tours

Our lovely gardens are opening up again this spring

Our very popular House & Garden Tours will be starting up again from April and continuing through to the end of August.  A chance to join members of our Gardening team to hear more about nurturing this beautiful series of gardens for the enjoyment of the Brothers, and to relax and enjoy them in the evenings. To begin with the Tours will be once a week, but we may add more as the weather improves.  The gardening team will be busy planting, weeding and improving lawns till then, and we will be confirming more spring dates soon. The new House & Gardens Tour tickets are now live! Book here.

evening, Gardens, open gardens

Open Gardens

We are delighted to welcome you once more to enjoy our beautiful private gardens at our relaxed Open Gardens evenings, when you can wander at your leisure, see the gardens at their best, and enjoy refreshments and live music with friends and family.  The lovely series gardens on our seven acre site have been especially created for the pleasure of the Brothers, our residents here at the Charterhouse almshouse, and we are pleased to be able to share them with you on selected dates: 23rd June & 14th July - from 5.30-8.30pm. Tickets are £10 with the choice of buying food & drink when you come. In 2022, our Open Gardens events are kindly being sponsored by Diploma PLC. You can now book your tickets here.

Family, open air, theatre

The Tempest – Shakespeare in the Squares

29th June 2022 | 6:00pm - 8:00pm This summer we are delighted to be hosting a performance of The Tempest, the 2022 production from Shakespeare in the Squares. Director Sioned Jones comments, "The Tempest has been described by some as the perfect Shakespeare play. It has the love story of Romeo and Juliet, the revenge, intrigue and plotting of Richard III and the magic, fantasy and comedy of A Midsummer Night’s Dream." The show will be outside in Charterhouse Square, so bring a picnic and join the castaways on their desert island. Shakespeare in the Squares is a not-for-profit touring theatre company that stages a Shakespeare play in London garden squares for one night in each venue every summer. The aim is to provide a showcase for talented young theatre practitioners and to introduce audiences to the stars of the future. The exciting and innovative professional productions are filled with music and dance. Further information can be found at Charterhouse Square, EC1 - Venues - Shakespeare in the Squares www.shakespeareinthesquares.co.uk Tickets are now on sale - book your ticket here.

Open Air Theatre

The Importance of Being Earnest – Slapstick Picnic

1st September 2022 | 7:00pm - 9:00pm Slapstick Picnic present a fantastically wild(e) new production, ripping up the recipe book and celebrating silliness. Prepare to witness the impossible - the entirety of Oscar Wilde’s classic play of manners, affairs and handbags being performed by just two rather dashing entertainers. This is an outdoor production, so please bring your own chair or blanket to sit on, a picnic to dig into, and dress for the weather! Doors open at 6pm, so bring a picnic and come and enjoy the beautiful surroundings. Chairs, picnics, blankets and any other low level accessories are welcome. In case of rain, please don't bring umbrellas as they block sight-lines for other audience members. Ponchos and raincoats are just as fetching, so please wear these instead. Book your tickets here Buy tickets for The Importance of Being Earnest @ The Charterhouse at The Charterhouse, Thu 1 Sep 2022 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM (tickettailor.com)

activity, kidsactivity, teaching resource

Design your own coat of arms

Here's an idea for children and for teachers - a design project that combines history with talking about your own family and what makes it special.  Get creative with our 'Design a coat of arms' activity - and if you send us your designs, we'll choose our favourite and send you a cuddly soft Talbot dog!  Find all the details here.

architecture, history

Boundaries in time, place and material by Eric Parry RA: recorded lecture

Our 2020 Thomas Sutton Lecture by eminent architect Eric Parry RA, MA (Cantab), MA (RCA), AADipl, RIBA is now available online. Eric Parry, with his practice, Eric Parry Architects, was commissioned back in 2014 to take on the major HLF-funded project of opening up the Charterhouse to the public for the first time, creating a new entrance, reception, museum and learning centre which complemented the ancient architecture here, and created a compelling and engaging visitor experience. This is a sequel to Eric Parry's lecture given last year for the London Festival of Architecture, exploring the theme of 'Boundaries'. Eric Parry will explore all the different boundaries dividing up London, both ancient and modern, tangible and abstract, and then focus on the intentions for the 'Revealing the Charterhouse' project, both social and architectural. One boundary that will be illustrated, with reference to the Charterhouse and other examples, will be the questions of responding to important historical contexts. Access the link here (and a donation would be most welcome).

Cromwell, lecture, online

Cromwell, Bowes, the Goldsmiths and the Mint: recorded lecture

During the reign of Henry VIII a special three-way relationship existed between the royal jewel house, the mint and the Goldsmiths’ Company: the jewel house and the mint were both at the Tower of London. The jewel house was the repository of huge quantities of surplus royal plate and in times of need quantities of old plate would be trundled across the courtyard to the mint to be recycled into gold or silver coins. Each year the Goldsmiths’ Company was charged with checking (as it still is) that the newly minted coinage was of the correct alloy. Join author and expert in gold and silver Timothy Schroder as he takes a close look at the workings of this relationship and at the individuals who operated it: Thomas Cromwell, master of the jewel house and Martin Bowes, who was both master of the mint and an influential member of the Goldsmiths’ Company. Timothy Schroder is author of ‘A Marvel to Behold’, Gold and Silver at the Court of Henry VIII (Boydell, 2020) and past Prime Warden of the Goldsmiths’ Company. Access your link to the lecture here (& a donation would be most welcome).

charity, donationswelcome, law, lawyers, lecture

More and more – Law and the Charterhouse: recorded lecture

An opportunity to see the recording of Sir Mark Warby's fascinating Lecture - 'More and more - law & the Charterhouse'. High Court Judge, Sir Mark Warby presents his own compelling and illustrated insights into law and its development in UK and USA, and an array of its practitioners, some distinguished and some less so, and their connections with the Charterhouse over the centuries. His interest in the subject was first sparked in 2017 when he arrived at the Charterhouse as 'consort' to the Master, Ann Kenrick. Sir Thomas More is perhaps the most famous legal mind to be associated with the Charterhouse, but there are many others, as Sir Mark's lecture will reveal. Access the link here (and a donation would be very welcome).

17th century, portraits, Restoration

The Restoration of Kings, Copies and Clerics: recorded lecture

We are delighted to share the recording of our March lecture 'The Restoration of Kings, Copies and Clerics' by artist and independent researcher Ibby Lanfear, where she explores the history and significance of the seventeenth century portrait collection at the Charterhouse. Based on extensive research in the Charterhouse archives, Ibby shares her findings on this very notable collection of portraits, which have been recently renovated and are now on display in the refurbished Great Chamber. From their acquisition during the Restoration era, to the dramatic survival of the collection in 1941, Ibby will explore the cultural and material relevance of the works both to the Charterhouse charity and beyond. Since training as an easel paintings’ conservator at the Courtauld Institute of Art, Ibby Lanfear has worked as a conservator and researcher for museums, universities, and institutions such as the National Trust. In 2017 she became the Paul Mellon curatorial researcher at the Charterhouse and her extensive research is published by the Charterhouse and the National Portrait Gallery. Get your link to the lecture here. Please make a donation if you can.

Elizabeth I, fine art, oldmasters, portrait

Back to the Future – an artist‘s journey in search of authenticity: recorded lecture

What is authenticity? Can it be replicated?  Artist and painting conservator Ying Yang  was commissioned by the Charterhouse in 2018 to create a replica of Quentin Metsys the Younger's painting 'Sieve Portrait of Queen Elizabeth I', which is now in the Charterhouse’s permanent collection and hanging in the Great Chamber. In this lecture, based on his commission work experience, Ying suggests that beyond intricate skill and technique, copying an Old Master painting also requires deep understanding, imagination and innovation. He believes a well-constructed copy not only replicates images for us to see today, it also holds something for us to enjoy tomorrow. Ying has been a painter and painting conservator for over 25 years. He is now a Professor at Nanjing Normal University in China. Access your link to the lecture here (& a donation would be most welcome).

17th century, lecture, Restoration

The Charterhouse from Restoration to Revolution: recorded lecture

Our online lecture by Dr. Cathy Ross, Honorary Research Fellow at the Museum of London, and consultant to the Charterhouse, is now available as a recording to view online. In the lecture Cathy shares some of the new stories that have emerged from the Great Chamber project, and in particular its focus on the seventeenth-century governors whose portraits now hang in the room. Did the restoration of Charles II after the Civil War usher in a period of calm, or was the opposite true? The lecture will explore the ups and downs of Sutton’s Hospital and its governors during this remarkable and turbulent period. Dr Cathy Ross’s museum career has focused on the challenges of representing the complexity of cities within a museum, and has published widely on museums, contemporary collecting and London history. Her books include Designing Utopia: John Hargrave and the Kibbo Kift (2015), London: The Illustrated History (2008), The Romance of Bethnal Green (2007), Twenties London: a City in the Jazz Age (2003). Access your link to the lecture (with a donation if you can) here.

gardening, Gardens, wellbeing

Gardens are good for you: recorded events

Here's a chance to see a selection from our very successful Flower Power online festival earlier this year.  Just the thing to bring the joy of spring and summer into winter days.  This selection includes our Head Gardener Kate Robinson taking you on a tour of the Charterhouse Gardens, Ash Edwards presenting the amazing work of the Horatio's Garden charity, flower farmer Nic Bird talking about Growing to Give, the project she started to encourage growing flowers to give to charities, and gardener and broadcaster Ellen Mary telling us about all the ways our connection to nature brings wellbeing.  Book here to access links to all these recorded events free of charge.

City gardens, landscape design, urban design

The ‘ancient impenetrability’ of Charterhouse Square: recorded lecture

We were delighted that acclaimed landscape designer Todd Longstaffe-Gowan could give our September online lecture. Todd conceived and created the gardens in Charterhouse Square. Where previously there was a car park and not much more - he has created a lovely urban oasis right on the edge of the City. In his talk, filmed outside in Charterhouse Square, Todd discusses how his scheme for the recent refurbishment of Charterhouse Square is intended to enhance the inherent qualities of a place imbued with a remarkable atmosphere, redolent of great antiquity and pre-Reformation monasticism, and possessing an antiquarian interest unrivalled in other London squares. To see Todd Longstaffe-Gowan's lecture, click here (with option of a donation).

19th century, charity, Charterhouse School, lecture, onlinelecture

Charterhouse School’s exodus to Godalming: recorded lecture

We were really delighted that Catherine Smith, archivist at Charterhouse School, presented her fascinating look at the history of Charterhouse School for our July online Lecture. Here is a chance to view it again! Catherine takes a close look at the time the school at Charterhouse - first founded in 1611 - moved to new premises in Goldalming in 1872, exploring the reasons for the move and the consequences for both the School and the almshouse. Catherine has been based at the School for 11 years and has a fantastic knowledge of its history with a host of stories and illustrations.  We greatly appreciate Catherine giving this lecture in support of our charity. (Ignore the dates given above) You can now access a link to the Lecture, with the option of making a donation, here.

charity, donationswelcome, Henry VIII, lecture, tudor

Henry VIII and the Men Who Made Him: recorded lecture

An opportunity to watch our recent excellent live online Lecture by eminent historian and best selling author Tracy Borman as she shares insights from her research, and excerpts from her book Henry VIII and the Men who Made Him. Henry VIII is famous for his multiple marriages, but it was the men in his life who shaped this notorious monarch - and he, in turn, determined their fates. In this talk we are introduced to a dazzling cast of characters: some 'mad' (Sir Francis Bryan, the so-called 'Vicar of Hell'), some 'bad' (the grasping minister Thomas Wolsey) - but none as 'dangerous to know' as Henry VIII himself. Tracy Borman has extremely kindly agreed to give this lecture to help raise funds for the charity as it navigates very challenging times during the pandemic.  (Ignore the dates above) You can receive the link to the Lecture now with the option of paying a donation, here.

James I and the English Witch Hunts: Recorded lecture

We were delighted to welcome back acclaimed historian, author and broadcaster Tracy Borman for our September online Lecture. Now you can see the recording of this gripping talk, inspired by her non-fiction book, Witches, as well as her fiction trilogy, The King’s Witch, which takes us into the turbulent world of the early Stuart court. After inheriting the throne from the last Tudor monarch, Elizabeth I, James VI and I waged a war on witches and Catholics alike. It was not long before a dark campaign to destroy both King and Parliament gathered pace, culminating in the Gunpowder Plot. Access the link to the recording here (with a donation if you can)

gardening, Gardens, wellbeing

The power of flowers: recorded events

Another selection from our very successful Flower Power online festival earlier this year.  This selection is all about flowers, growing them, arranging them and bringing their joy into your home!  Join Catherine Foxwell of Floral Evolution and leading UK florist Shane Connolly for their fabulous arrangements, plus Sarah Whiting of Nettlewood Flowers and Marianne Mogendorff of Wolves Lane Flower Company for a guide to creating your own cutting gardens.  Book here to be sent the links to all these recorded events free of charge.

almshouses, charity, housing, social

Almshouses – from Athelstan to the 21st century and beyond: recorded lecture

What is an almshouse, what role have these homes played throughout history, and how are they relevant and important today?  We are delighted to present a lecture by Elizabeth Fathi, Chairman of The Almshouse Association, who shares an historical exploration of the development of almshouses, how they have evolved over the centuries, to their role today, nationally and in their local communities, when there are now over 1600 independent almshouse charities all across the UK. Hear about the work of these charities, amongst which the Charterhouse is proud to have been for over 400 years, and how they continue to be relevant and much needed with today's shortage of affordable housing. The Almshouse Association, a national membership organisation representing the UK's almshouse charities covers an estimated 35,000 almshouses and 12,000 trustees. Receive your link to the lecture here (with a donation if you can).

familyfun, garden, kidsactivity, kidsathome, nature

Family Garden Trail

Charterhouse Square is open to the public (every day except Monday) and is a little oasis in the City! And it's a great destination for our little Family Garden Trail which takes you around the Square and gives you a series of fun activities to enhance your visit to this lovely spot. Print out the free Trail here and head out with some pens and crayons and get busy!!

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