Kirkham Priory

School Vists

Kirkham Priory is a lovely Medieval priory situated in a beautiful, tranquil valley on the banks of the river Derwent. A visit here could enhance art studies and geography fieldwork as well as Medieval themed history studies.

"My class were enthralled and have been talking non-stop about their visit. I am glad we made the effort of sitting for 2 hours in the coach – it really was worth it!”

Teacher, KS2

Image © Historic England Archive

Curriculum Links

Support your teaching in the classroom by stepping out of it. A visit to Kirkham Priory will help you bring learning to life, covering multiple topics across the curriculum and key stages.

  • KS2 History: Local history studies
  • KS2 Geography: Types of settlement and land use
  • KS2 Science: Plants and habitats
  • KS3 History: Development of church, state and society in Medieval Britain.  A Local History study.
  • KS4 History: Medieval studies
  • KS5 History: OCR A Level: English government and the church, The church and Medieval heresy
© Historic England Archive

Free Self-Led Visits

Book a free self-led visit to Kirkham Priory and organise your day to suit your curriculum objectives. The gatehouse has some excellent heraldic images to view and the refectory doorway has some exceptional carving. The laver, where the canons would wash is also very well preserved, giving your students the opporunity to explore what everyday life was like inside medieval religious institutions. 


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Plan Your Trip

We have a wide range of materials to support your visit and make school trip planning easy. You can find all our site-specific information and tools below, and further information on our what to expect page.

Download our free resources to help you make the most out of your visit and create unique learning experiences before, during and after your trip. We also offer free planning visits once you have made a booking, plus a 20% discount on the official English Heritage guidebook for your place of choice.

Once you book your visit you’ll be sent a visit permit, which you’ll need to bring with you on the day.

Visit our bookings page to start planning your trip!

  • Facilities
    • PARKING: small parking on site. Suitable for mini bus. Coach parking cannot be guaranteed.
    • TOILETS: Accessible toilet on site.
    • LUNCH: No undercover space but picnics welcome.
    • SHOP: Small shop on site. Please visit in small groups.
    • EDUCATION ROOM or BAG STORAGE: No space available.
    • ACCESSIBILITY: Mostly grass. Some steps to lower levels.
    • WET WEATHER: The site is mostly ruined and so undercover space is very minimal. In the event of very inclement weather, it may be best to reschedule your visit.
  • Hazard Information

    A useful tool to help with your risk assessments.

    You must meet the following ratios for leaders to students on the day of your visit when booking, and if your group is forming smaller groups while at the site:

    • Ages 4-5 (UK Reception) 1 leader for every 4 students (1:4)
    • Ages 5-7 (UK Key Stage 1) 1 leader for every 6 students (1:6)
    • Ages 7-11 (UK Key Stage 2) 1 leader for every 10 students (1:10) and
    • Ages 11-18 (UK Key Stages 3, 4, and 5) 1 leader for every 15 students (1:15)
    • For an adult learning group, consisting of individuals all over the age of 18, there are no ratios but there must be an appointed group leader
    • All ratios outlined above apply to home education groups
    • If your group consists of children aged 3 and/or 4, you must also refer to the Early Years and Foundation Stage Statutory Framework which sets out specific legal requirements for minimum ratios for this age group, to include requirements about the qualifications of the leaders
    • SEND groups must meet the minimum ratios above but may bring any additional leaders as required to adequately support their group
  • Education Site Opening Times

    We offer free self-led education visits during school term time*.

    *Free education visits are not offered on UK public holidays or during the operation of additional fee paying public events at English Heritage sites.

    • 27 March-30 June: Wednesday-Sunday 10-4pm
    • 1 July-31 August: Monday-Sunday 10-4pm
    • 1 September-31 October: Wednesday-Sunday 10-4pm
    • 1 November-26 March: No bookings can be taken at the current time


Learning Resources

  • Teaching Medieval History

    Use historical information, learning activities and tips from our historians, curators and educational experts to support your teaching of medieval history.

  • A Mini Guide to Medieval Monks

    Find out more about different medieval monastic orders with our short animation.

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