What is the Charterhouse?
The Charterhouse is a former Carthusian monastery in London, to the north of what is now Charterhouse Square. Since the dissolution of the monasteries in the 16th century the house has served as private mansion, a boys’ school and an almshouse, which it remains to this day.
The residents of the almshouse are known as ‘Brothers’. This is a purely traditional term for those living in this community and acknowledges the past when there was a monastery on the site. The building is formally known as Sutton’s Hospital in Charterhouse, and is a registered charity (number 207773).
Members of the public are invited to visit our museum, which tells our story of the Charterhouse from the Black Death to the present day. Visitors can also book a tour of the grounds and buildings with a Brother of the Charterhouse. Visit our Tours page for more information.
In addition, it is possible to hire certain areas of the Charterhouse for private events.
What is an almshouse?
A house endowed by private charity for the reception and support of the aged or infirm poor.
Who are the Brothers?
The residents of the almshouse are known as ‘Brothers’. This is a purely traditional term for those living in this community and acknowledges the past when there was a monastery on the site.
The Brothers, who are in need of financial and social support, are selected from a wide variety of professions, including teachers, clergymen, writers and editors, musicians and artists. At entry they have to be over 60 years of age and in good health.
Is the Charterhouse open to the public?
Yes, you are invited to visit our free museum, which tells our story of the Charterhouse from the Black Death to the present day. Visitors can also book a tour of the grounds and buildings with a Brother of the Charterhouse. Visit our Tours page for more information.
In addition, we have a Learning Room and Learning Programme for school groups. For more information, visit our Learning page.
How long do tours last?
The standard tour lasts for one hour, and the Brothers tour lasts for up to two hours.
How can I get to the Charterhouse?
By underground: The nearest underground stations are Barbican and Farringdon.
Turn left out of Barbican station and then left again onto Carthusian Street, until you see Charterhouse Square’s green fences. Follow the path into Charterhouse Square, staying on the path until it forks to the left and right. Take the right fork until you reach the wrought-iron gates, emblazoned in gold with the motto, Deo Dante Dedi.
From Farringdon underground station turn left and walk up Cowcross Street. When you reach the traffic lights keep Smithfield Market to your right and follow the road past Barclays turning left into Charterhouse Square. You will see a pub called the Fox and Anchor and large black gates which mark the entrance to the square. Keep going past Malmaison hotel and the red post box until you see the wrought-iron gates emblazoned in gold with the motto Deo Dante Dedi. Please feel free to phone the museum team on 0203 818 8873 if you require any assistance.
By bus: Buses 4, 56, and 153 stop on Aldersgate Street, near Carthusian Street.
By car: Vehicles enter Charterhouse via the car park in Charterhouse Square, leading from Carthusian Street. We have a small number of disabled parking spaces for Blue and Orange Badge holders. Please call us in advance to book a space on 020 7490 7738.
What are the museum opening times?
We are open from 11am Tuesday to Sunday, with last admission at 4.45pm.
Can I volunteer at the Charterhouse?
We would love to hear from volunteers. For more information on voluntary positions at the Charterhouse visit the Support Us page.
Can I attend the chapel services?
All our services are open to the public. The gatekeeper will be happy to admit anyone who would like to attend. Find out more about our services by visiting the Chapel page.
When can we visit?
Schools are welcome to visit Mondays to Fridays between 10.30 – 14.30pm. Sessions last for 2 hours and can accommodate up to 35 students.
What if we have to cancel?
If you have to cancel a session please email or call two weeks in advance of the session, otherwise a fee will be incurred. Cancellation requests can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
When is our visit confirmed?
Confirmation is sent via email. We aim to do this as quickly as possible but during busy times this may take a while. Please read this email carefully, and if the details are not correct telephone us on 020 3319 3782 or email email@example.com.
Can you provide a risk assessment?
You should carry out your own risk assessment before you visit. To help you we have compiled a Health and Safety Briefing Sheet and strongly suggest you make a 20 minute pre-visit.
What if we arrive late?
If you are delayed, please telephone us on 020 3319 3782. Please plan to arrive about 10 minutes before the start of your session to allow time to visit the lavatories and to put coats and lunches away. If you arrive late, we may not be able to offer you a full workshop.
How many adults should we bring?
For school visits we require the following staff to pupil ratios:
- Special schools – 1:5
- Primary schools – 1:6
- Secondary schools – 1:15
A Level groups and individuals can attend without an adult; however, if attending two-location session students must be accompanied by their teacher. Please check when booking.
Where can we eat lunch?
We are currently building a brand new learning centre in which groups will be able to book 30-minute lunchroom slots.
Between October – December 2016 we are happy to accommodate groups in our historic interior. Please let us know if you would like eat packed lunches onsite.
Is there a cloakroom?
Our new learning centre will have dedicated space for coats, bags and packed lunches. Between October – December 2016 we can provide a safe space to store all of the above.
Can we take photos during our visit?
Yes, please do!