Saturday 2nd April 2022

New Display: The Bar Convent True Cross

From April 2

“Among the many historical treasures of which York is justly proud, the greatest is perhaps the least known.” Yorkshire Evening Press, 1917

To mark Easter, the Bar Convent has revealed a re-display, including new research and previously unseen documentation, of the little-known, but significant sacred object in the collections; The True Cross relic. Encased in a silver gilt cross and an elaborate silver, crystal and bejeweled monstrance-like case c.1867-70, it is a stunning centrepiece in the Bar Convent exhibition.

Recent research into the True Cross uncovered documentation that has never been on public display before, including authentication certificates. Through this documentation, we have been able to piece together further history of the relic, the painstaking research undertaken to have it authenticated, and how the relic was historically exhibited for veneration and contemplation throughout its time at the convent.

See the Bar Convent True Cross on display, alongside a selection of documentation, and discover more about its significance in this new display.

Included in admission to the exhibition. Walk-ins. Please note: The Bar Convent is closed April 15-18. On Monday 11 April there will be a family-friendly storytelling session of the Easter story at 11am. For more information please see the event below.

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Friday 29th April 2022

Baedeker: The 80th Anniversary

April 29- November (date tbc)

April 29th marks the 80th anniversary of the Baedeker Raids of the Second World War- when York was bombed by the Luftwaffe and the Bar Convent was directly hit.

As part of a citywide initiative, a new display uses documents from our archives to explore daily life at the convent and its girls school during the war, including how the convent contributed to the war effort and the events of April 29th when five of the sisters were killed. From fundraising for weapons, becoming Firewatchers and helping evacuees; gain a fascinating insight to life at the convent and the strength, bravery and camaraderie of the women within.

The display includes research by Louise Hyland (University of York) displayed alongside the Bar Convent diary that was found in the rubble after the bombing, and accompanied by reflective poetry written by pupils at All Saints RC School.

Included in admission to the exhibition.  10am-5pm (last admission 4pm).

Family activities will accompany the display for May Half Term (Excluding Sundays and bank holidays).

The Baedeker Raids


Friday 3rd June 2022

Weekly Mass

You are warmly invited to join us for Mass every Friday, held at 12pm in the Bar Convent’s hidden chapel. All are welcome and the cafe will be open for lunch afterwards.

Please note that, on rare occasions, we might need to cancel Mass due to special circumstances (i.e., maintenance of the chapel or a special event). Please call ahead on 01904 643 238 before making a special trip.

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Saturday 23rd July 2022

The Bar Convent Treasures Trail

July 23rd – September 3rd (Excluding Sundays)

This summer, the Bar Convent invites you to follow a new family-friendly trail to discover the treasures of our house.

When the Bar Convent first opened in 1689, a time when Catholicism was illegal, many objects were given to the Convent for safe-keeping so that they wouldn’t be destroyed by the authorities. These joined the Bar Convent’s own belongings and this is where our collection began…

Today, more than 300 years later, historical treasures are on display in the exhibition and around the house. From a medieval chalice, to our original door key and a gilded dome ceiling; discover what makes these objects so special to us and how they tell our story. Look for the ‘X’ marks the spot and tick off each item to win a special prize.

After all of your exploring, be sure to take a break in our café and garden.

Included in admission to the exhibition. Mon-Sat, 10-5 (last admission 4pm). Adults: £6, Children: £2, Under 6: FREE, Family Ticket: £12.

Treasures Trail (Facebook Post 940 x 788 px)