Saint John's Hospital, Northgate: details (1)
St John Baptist
St John Baptist
Main entrance from Northgate - gatehouse dating from late 15th or early 16th century. Repaired in 1972. Gable front with shaped bargeboards. (Blank shields and leaf decorations in the spandrels - photos forthcoming!)
Detail of gatehouse - inside is a small office, once a lodging for the porter.
St John Baptist - turret
St John Baptist - kitchen
One of the oldest surviving parts - the old kitchen (ground floor) behind the beautiful septagonal (seven-sided) stair turret with blocked slit windows, which leads up to the dining room. Fishscale tiles on the roof.
The old kitchen - detail of the fireplace with its spits for roasting.. The room has been renovated (1970s) as a common room for the residents.
St John Baptist - chapel
St John Baptist - font

The chapel - 12th century with 15th century windows (on other side) - this is the north wall. Described by experts as '1 storey flint and rubble with stone quoins and buttresses'
Note the bricked-in arches which originally led to the north transept, which was demolished.


The font in the chapel "with its curious Jacobean cover like a table leg, is of early mediaeval date" says Hill. He also says that there was a font here because tenants on the Hospital's land had the right to baptise their children in the chapel instead of the parish church.

For more pictures, including the oldest toilet in England (?!) click here>

Copyright Stephen Bax 1999. Click here for terms of use.