Holy Rood House

Time and space for you with our community

Holy Rood House is primarily a community overlooking the Hambleton Hills and nestled in the picturesque village of Sowerby, a few minutes walk away from the bustling Herriot market town of Thirsk.

Rarely have I experienced such love, peace and happiness in a community…

It is a very special house, offering therapeutic care and retreat for hundreds of guests each year. We have an excellent reputation for home cooking and a policy that no-one should ever feel unable to stay because of cost.

We are a registered charity wholly supported by donations from guests, friends, financial partners, local organisations and some grant making trusts.

The house was a Convent (The Sisters of the Holy Rood), before the present Trust began its work of therapeutic care in 1993. There is now a small residential community working alongside others, mainly voluntary staff, to provide hospitality for the many guests who visit from across Britain.

There are two houses, next door to each other. Juliet House was purchased by the Trust in 1996. Both houses are situated within creative gardens and a tranquil environment.

Our main focus is on health and well-being. We are a community of healing and we find ourselves working at the cutting edge of society and the Church, breaking down prejudices and fears, and welcoming many different kinds of people of all ages and backgrounds. Our holistic and sensitive approach to different traditions is reflected in our accompaniment towards the transformation of people’s lives.

In 2001 The Centre for The Study of Theology and Health was opened in Juliet House, springing from and informing the therapeutic work of Holy Rood House.

What kind of community are we?

We are an ecumenical and inclusive community. We respect and may have experienced ourselves, some of the many different paths and journeys people may have taken. 

We are a therapeutic community. We are sensitive to the importance for each person to find their own empowerment for change and well-being. The effects on life-journeys of a person’s health, gender and culture are recognised and celebrated.

We are a residential community. We welcome people with friendship and hospitality providing safer space for reflection, learning and healing.

We are a spirituality community. We gather our guests into the prayerfulness of the house and grounds, with chapel spaces and a daily rhythm within which to feel held.

We are a theological community. We offer gentle accompaniment alongside the challenge of contextual theologies and a contemporary library, creating open and affirming opportunities to explore fresh ways of thinking.

We welcome our guests as part of the community, shaping the ethos and the future.

This house holds the spirit and carries the burden

A house full of the rustlings of a new energy and renewal