Society for Creative Anachronism

West Dragonshire


Winchester Pilgrimage VIII

Logistics etc

The Hospital of St Cross is a period site, and it is also the residence for some 22 Brothers, who are all of retirement age and value their privacy and peace and quiet. These things place certain restrictions on how we access and use the site.

See below for aerial view showing the main features.

General Behaviour

Please remember that this is a period site, and, it is the home to 22 or so Brothers, who are all elderly.

Please be respectful of their privacy and keep away from those areas that are marked as private, residents only etc. This includes the residences themselves, the Brothers' gardens, their common room and library etc, unless invited by one of the Brothers. The residences are on the right as you come through the gatehouse, easily recognisable by the tall chimneys. See aerial view below.

Please keep the noise down after 9pm, especially in the Quad, as this is very close to the residential part of the site. If you do socialise in your period pavilions, please keep conversations to a quiet level and no playing of bagpipes etc. For carousing etc, please keep this to the 100 Mens Hall on Friday night and the Brethrens Hall on Saturday night, and even there, try to keep the noise to an acceptable level.

Please be careful of the fabric of the site, especially when carrying tent poles, waving swords and pole-arms etc around, so that you do not damage anything.

At all times, please follow the instructions of the residents and staff.

Any queries that the stewards cannot answer should be addressed to Cathy, the Porter. Her word is law. Be nice to her because she works very hard to accommodate us.

The 100 Mens Hall is used as a cafe on Saturday and Sunday. This means clearing out ALL your belongings on Friday evening, and your breakfast things on Saturday and Sunday mornings by 9:30am.

Please clear away ALL your empties - bottles, cans, flagons, wineskins and feast gear etc after the activities of Friday and Saturday evenings. The feast hall especially needs to be cleared up before the site opens to the public in the morning. Do not leave it to the event crew to have to pick up after you on Saturday or Sunday morning. We have enough to do. Also, remember that there will be members of the public around, who definitely don't want to see your empty bottles and half-chewed chicken legs. There are bins and recycling facilities on site, but be aware they are used to catering for the needs of the Brothers, so if you can take your garbage away with you, please do so. Your event staff will not have room in their vehicles to take it away for you.


The main gates to the site are in Back Street, the narrow drive you turn into from the main road, a few hundred yards from the turning. This is at the main gatehouse. There will be vehicular access for unloading and loading only, but no parking is permitted, as this is reserved for St Cross residents and staff. After 10pm, the main gates close, and there is only pedestrian access through a sally port in the main gate, which is protected by a combination lock. The code for this will be provided on the day. So, if you need to get in and out after 10pm, to go to the pub or the chip shop, please ask for the code before you leave.

There will also be vehicular access via the Bowling Green (mundane camp), but you will have to lug your gear further to get to the period encampment in the Quad.

If you are likely to arrive before 5pm or after 9pm, please let Ariel or Raphe know as soon as you have your travel plans sorted, so that we can make the appropriate arrangements. Email us on or, or telephone us on the day - 07516 147457 (Raphe) and 07759 947964 (Ariel, but only after 6pm on the Friday).

Please bear in mind that it is a period site, and so some parts may have uneven flooring etc. If you have any mobility issues, please let Raphe or Ariel know so that we can advise.


Once you  have unloaded your gear, please park in the Bowling Green, or possibly the guest parking area (subject to confirmation). Remember to lock your vehicle. Do not park in the area around the gatehouse and 100 Mens Hall as this is reserved for residents and staff. Please do not park in Back Street alongside the buildings. If you need to park closer for mobility reasons, please advise us beforehand.

Arrival Times

There are limited times during which we have vehicular access to the site and can set up camp.

The site is open to the public until 5pm, so please do not arrive before then. If you are coming by public transport and have to arrive early, you may be able to leave your luggage with the porter, but please let us know in advance if this is the case, so that we can make arrangements.

There is a curfew of 9pm on any loud noise in the Quad (Period Camp), so please try to arrive before then, so that you can get your tent pegs banged in without disturbing the residents.

There will be vehicular access via the Bowling Green any time (but you will not be able to take stuff through until after 5pm), including after 9pm.

If you are likely to arrive before 5pm or after 9pm, please let Ariel or Raphe know as soon as you have your travel plans sorted, so that we can make the appropriate arrangements. Email us on or, or telephone us on the day - 07516 147457 (Raphe) and 07759 947964 (Ariel, but only after 6pm on the Friday).


The Period Camp is in the main quad of the building and is quite close to the residences, so please be aware of this when setting up your pavilions and keep  noise to a minimum. No banging of tent pegs after 9pm please.

Vehicular access to the quad is allowed, for the purpose of unloading and loading only. Please get your vehicle in, unload, and then move to one of the parking areas before putting up your pavilions. There is limited space for vehicles, so the sooner you get your vehicle in and out, the sooner somebody else can get in and unload their stuff.

When driving in the quad, try to stick to the gravel track and proceed in a clockwise fashion only.

Alternatively, park in the Bowling Green and carry your stuff through to the Ambulatory and into the quad that way. After 9pm, this will be your only option.

We have a little more leeway on the mundane camp as that is further away from the residential area, but again, please try to minimise noise after 9pm.

To allow space for the list field and for the audience, please camp in the areas outlined in yellow on the aerial view below.


There are church services at 8:00 and 9:30 on Sunday morning, so vehicular access to the quad will be limited until around 11:00 or so to allow for the congregation to get in and out without restrictions. Before then, you will have to lug your kit out via the Bowling Green.

Facilities & Eating

Facilities are limited, as this is a period site.

There are lavatories available near the gatehouse. I am advised that new facilities have been installed since we were last there, so should be better than the ones previous attendees will remember.

There will be a shower available during the Saturday for those who have exerted themselves on the list field. Please ask one of the stewards for details.

Due to minimal uptake in previous years, we will not be providing a meal on Friday night or Saturday lunchtime. There is a very good fish & chip shop very close by (see aerial view) and the Bell Inn is equally close. Note both these only serve until 9pm.

Otherwise there are plenty of eateries and takeaways in Winchester itself.

The cafe in the 100 Mens Hall serves light refreshments during the day, but not normally at lunchtime although that may change if they are expecting lots of visitors to come and see us.

On Friday evening, we will socialise in the 100 Mens Hall. On Saturday evening, in the Brethrens Hall. You are, of course, free to socialise in your pavilions, tents etc. But, in the period encampment, please keep conversation to a quiet level so as not to disturb the residents, especially after 9pm.

Local Facilities

The nearest supermarket is the Sainsbury's Superstore at Badger Farm, barely 2 miles away. Turn left out of Back Street back towards the motorway. Turn right at the roundabout up Badger Farm Road, the supermarket is half a mile on your right.


The nearest hospital is the Royal Hampshire, less than 2 miles away. Turn right out of the site towards Winchester. At the end of St Cross road, turn left up the High Street, continue onto Romsey Road and the hospital will be there on your left after 1/4 mile or so.


Things to Do and See in Winchester

Winchester is an ancient city (and True Capital of England), and has way too many historical things to see, other than St Cross itself. This is a selection of things you might want to look at.

Wolvesey Castle - The old bishop's palace of Winchester. This is on the route of the Pilgrimage and worth a visit.

Winchester College - Dating back to 1382, and believed to be one of the oldest continuously operating schools in the country. Access by guided tour only. Again, you pass it on the Pilgrimage Route.

Winchester Cathedral - The end point of the pilgrimage. Be sure to have a look round before you come back. There is a suggested donation rather than admittance, so take some mundane cash with you.

The Great Hall - 13th century hall, with the famed Round Table (probably Tudor). While you are there, check out the Westgate Museum and various bits of the old castle walls etc in the vicinity.

Winchester Museum - Close to the entrance to the cathedral grounds. Covers a lot of history, including our period.


Aerial View of St Cross



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Site last updated 15 Feb 2018 by Raphe Cuthbert