Studying at King’s Manor

King’s Manor is a Grade I listed building in York city centre. It is also the home of the University’s Department of Archaeology, Centre for Medieval Studies, and Centre for Eighteenth Century Studies. 

King’s Manor

Before I came to an open day, I didn’t know any of this. I actually wandered around West Campus for a bit looking for the Department of Archaeology. After speaking to the Department representatives, I found out that there was a tour of King’s Manor taking place later that day. So; I took the shuttle bus to the city centre to have a look around. King’s Manor is one of many factors that sold the University to me as a great place to study, and I wanted to share with you what’s so great about studying there!

The history of King’s Manor

First and foremost, it’s lovely to be able to study archaeology in a building with so much history. King’s Manor was originally built to house the abbots of St. Mary’s Abbey, holding this role until 1539. It was also the seat of the Council of the North until 1641, as well as the home of the Governor of York from 1667 to 1688. King Charles I and King James I visited the building. In the 19th century, it was home to the School for the Blind, and has been part of the University of York since 1963. It feels fitting to be studying the past in a building that has stood since the 1200s – and it’s also a very pretty building. 

Inside King’s Manor

You can grab a coffee at the cafe in King's Manor
The cafe

King’s Manor has it’s own library that has a much cosier feel than most university libraries. You don’t feel the need to go back home or to West Campus to find a book or a place to study. King’s Manor has it’s own cafe too (the Refectory), which is open to the public. It’s is a great place to do group work or have a catch up with friends and course mates. If you’re getting a drink to take away, it’s always worth bringing a reusable cup to get a better price for your drink (and to help out the planet)! 

The surrounding sites

The Yorkshire Museum Gardens are just outside of King's Manor
St Mary’s Abbey

When you’re done studying, or if you just need a break, you’re right in the middle of York city centre. There’s so much to explore – it’ll take your mind of essay deadlines and presentation stress. Here’s a shout out to the cat cafe for providing much needed relaxation! If you feel like visiting a museum, York Art Gallery is just outside the gates to King’s Manor. The Yorkshire Museum is also just down the road. The York Museum Gardens are a great place to get some fresh air and chill; plus, they have dairy free ice-cream which really sells it for me!

The York Art Gallery
Cuddle with cats at the cat cafe
York Minster
The courtyard calf

Finally, I just wanted to give an honourable mention to the courtyard calf sculpture, which improves the lives of students in immeasurable ways (it’s just super cute).

You can read more about King’s Manor here.

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Hi! I'm currently studying MSc Bioarchaeology after completing my BA in Archaeology and Ancient History at the University of Birmingham. I love art and travel, and I spend too much of my time in museums.

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