Managed by English Heritage, Milton Chantry is the oldest building in Gravesend, Kent, and is well worth a visit if you live in or are visiting the area. The site was the location of a leper hospital that was built long ago in 1322. Unfortunately, Milton Chantry is all that is left at the site. It has had a colourful past and has formerly been a hospital, a Tudor chantry chapel, pub, and barracks during Georgian times.
According to English Heritage, its basement was converted for use as a gas decontamination chamber during WWII and it still has its 14th-century timber roof, although the building itself encased in 19th-century brick.
As we’re based in Dartford, Gravesend is a place we visit often to install our custom-fitted blinds. As such we were already familiar with the building but didn’t really know much about it.
What is a chantry?
In case you don’t know, (and according to Wiki) a chantry is:
A chantry or obiit (Latin: “(s)he has departed”; may also refer to the mass or masses themselves) was a form of trust fund established during the pre-Reformation medieval era in England for the purpose of employing one or more priests to sing a stipulated number of masses for the benefit of the soul of a specified deceased person, usually the donor who had established the chantry in his will, during a stipulated period of time immediately following his death.
If you’re paying a visit, the normal opening times are 12 – 5pm during weekends and Bank Holidays, from April until October. Admission outside of these times is still possible but is by appointment only. Milton Chantry is closed between October and April.
There is paid parking nearby and you should hopefully be able to spot the signs nearby when you get there. The place is also pet-friendly and you can take your dog along although you must keep it on a lead.