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Buckfast Abbey Retreat Centre

The monks have developed the Southgate retreat as an extension of the monastic guest quarters, enabling women and couples to stay at Buckfast Abbey on individually guided retreats. This means that guests are able to come here for a few days
or more, to unwind, recharge batteries and have the opportunity to attend monastic services in the Abbey Church.

The word retreat has many nuances. In the monastic context, one basic meaning is to stand back and to take stock of things in order to achieve perspective and insight in to the significance of our everyday lives. This can involve a time to be alone in order to read, think, reflect and pray. There may also be the opportunity to meet other guests and talk in a ‘neutral’ environment.

Southgate is one of the medieval entrances to the outer court of the monastery precinct. The original 13th Century building is thought to have been the Abbey’s Almhouses, providing shelter for the poor. The building is one of the first features to come into view when approaching the Abbey Church and is accessed from the main public car Park.

The house boasts its own chapel, dining room, lounge and quiet reading areas in additional to a wonderful walled water garden and adjoining lawn. Due to recent work, the house now boasts 4 en-suite rooms plus an additional 7 rooms spread over 3 floors. All rooms are comfortably well-appointed with desks and tea/coffee making facilities.

The house has 7 twin rooms and 4 singles, accommodating a maximum of 18 guests. Retreats at Southgate are for women and married couples, men who wish to make a retreat by themselves are welcome to contact the Monastic Guest Master at:

Individuals are invited to make a donation for their stay; please inquire for the charges related to groups. It is not possible for guests to self cater at Southgate.

From Monday to Saturday Southgate guests will be able to attend Mass at 12.05pm and Vespers at 6.30pm; it will not be possible to attend the other monastic services as these are not currently held in the Abbey Church. The Blessed Sacrament Chapel remains open for private prayer as does the Chapel in Southgate itself. We hope you understand that these changes are necessary to enable the organ installation and tuning to take place as quickly as possible. There are no current plans to work during the month of August.

For further information please contact:

Women and Married Men: Southgate Guestmaster:-  01364 645521 or

Or you can fill in this inquiry form:

What is your name?

What is your address

What is your email address?

What is your Telephone Number

What is your preferred arrival date?

Are your dates flexible?

How many nights would you like to stay?

Any other information?

If you have any vulnerabilities or safeguarding needs that are relevant to your stay, it is essential that you tell us when making your enquiry.

   
 
Commemoration of All Souls - 2nd November 2018

On the eve of All Souls the graves of past members of the Community are lighted with lamps. Following the Conventual Mass the Monastic Cemetery is blessed.

Millennium Monastic Celebration - 27th October 2018

The Abbot Primate, the Right Reverend Gregory Polan O.S.B. presided at a Solemn Mass on Saturday 27th October in thanksgiving for the Millennium Anniversary of the Granting of the Foundation Charter. Representatives of Monastic Communities were present for the Mass. This Monastic Celebration was held at this time, as monks returned to Buckfast on 28th October 1882 and rebuilt the monastery on its medieval foundations. As the 28th, the feast of Saints Simon and Jude was a Sunday, a votive Mass of the Apostles was celebrated the day before.

English Benedictine Congregation Conference - October 2018

The E.B.C. Continuing Formation Commission arranged a conference at Buckfast with the theme "Taking Responsibility for Your Community". Representatives from all the communities of the E.B.C. were present. Speakers were Baroness Sheila Hollins, Sister Anna Brennan and Abbot Jeremias Schroeder. The conference was also assisted by Caryn Vanstone, Bruno Dalbiez, Father Andrew Browne and Marie Grant.

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