St Beuno's Jesuit Retreat

Perched high on the last hill before North Wales drops to the sea sits St Beuno's Jesuit Spirituality Centre, commanding a rather epic view across the Vale of Clwyd out to the Irish Sea. Recclesia has undertaken several contracts to the range of buildings at St. Beunos, as well as having assissted with survey work and invasive investigation work.

The most recent phases of work here have included the repair and re-roofing of the central tower, masonry repairs to various elevations, joinery repairs, leadwork, repairs to stone chimneys and some internal reordering and repair.

St Beuno's College was built in 1848 as a place for Jesuits to study theology. Up to this time prospective Jesuit priests studied in Stonyhurst College, Lancashire, but the increasing numbers put a strain on the old buildings. So in 1846, the then Provincial Superior of the British Jesuits, Fr Randal Lythgoe, when visiting the Jesuit parish in Holywell travelled to see some farm land that the Society of Jesus owned near Tremeirchion and immediately decided that this should be the site for his new ‘theologate’.

The architect was Joseph Aloysius Hansom, of Hansom Cab fames. In the early days of the College could be said to be environmentally friendly: heating for the lower floor was at least in part solar, with the heat from the greenhouse below the West Front being channelled into the house. Fresh water was provided from local streams which was stored in tanks, which still exist above the terraces, and food was grown locally both in the College's grounds and on the adjacent College Farm. The College also had its own gas works and there was also a school built for local children.

More information: St Beunos