At the Lord Leycester we are undertaking a once in a century repair and improvement project that we expect to complete in summer 2023 and expect it will transform into one of the best places to visit in Warwickshire.
Over the past seven hundred years the Lord Leycester Hospital has seen several big restorations!
These Warwick medieval buildings were built in 1385 and half-timbered buildings – as strong and resilient as they are – do suffer from damp and wood beetle infestations over the centuries. The oldest part of the Lord Leycester, a stone chapel, was built in 1123 over the Westgate. The first restoration we know of was in the 1380’s when that stone chapel was restored and we see rebuilt the “bones ” of the chapel that stands there today. The repairs to the chapel happened at the same time as the new half-timbered buildings surrounding the chapel were being built by the Guilds.
What a project it must have been for the medieval period. So many grand buildings put up in such a short period – just 40 years. (A short period at least for this time in history – not surprising if you think every wooden beam had to be cut, hewn and put in place by hand!) And then for two hundred years the Guilds enjoyed their brand new corporate buildings complete with banqueting hall, corporate offices, conference rooms and a house for the Master of the Guild.
The next event in September 1571 when Robert Dudley Earl of Leicester came riding into Warwick would change the course of history for the buildings and their preservation …for ever……..