The Worshipful Company of Paviors moved into a new home in 2010. The Company has a long lease on a Grade 1 listed property formerly known as ‘The Master’s Cottage’ at Sutton’s Hospital in the Charterhouse. The property has been refurbished and is now known as Paviors’ House. The property provides accommodation on two floors. At ground level is the Clerk’s office with two desks, computer and internet facilities, a toilet and shower-room, and a mini kitchen. On the second floor is a meeting room, with a table and chairs. The room also houses the Master’s chair and an exhibition of some of the Company’s artefacts. The Company’s Royal Charter hangs in the room. The meeting room is available for the use of liverymen. The Company retains its very strong links with the Cutlers Company and Hall, where the archives continue to be stored. The Company also continues its policy of using the major livery halls for formal dinners.
The site of The Charterhouse was originally a burial ground for victims of the Black Death. In 1371, a Carthusian priory was established on the site by Sir Walter de Mauny, one of Edward III’s senior advisers. Henry VIII’s Chancellor, Sir Thomas More, frequented The Charterhouse as a young student, as it was an important centre of ecclesiastical learning. In 1535, the monastery was dissolved, as the monks refused to conform to Henry VIII’s Act of Supremacy: some were executed at Tyburn. Both Queen Elizabeth I and King James I subsequently stayed at The Charterhouse. Thomas Sutton acquired the property in 1611. Sutton had held the position of Master of the Ordnance in the North and was involved in the coal trade. Advantageous property dealings and money-lending had enabled him to amass a considerable fortune, and he was said to be the wealthiest commoner in England. He used much of his wealth to endow a charitable foundation, based at The Charterhouse, to educate boys and care for elderly men, known as ‘The Brothers’. John Wesley was a pupil at Charterhouse as was William Makepeace Thackeray. Charterhouse School moved to Godalming Surrey in 1872. The Charterhouse site was divided at that time, but the almshouses continue to this day to occupy part of the site.
Features of the buildings are the Chapel and Great Hall, the latter retaining its Tudor fire-place and wooden screen. The buildings sustained much damage during World War II, and the woodwork of the screen in the Great Hall still shows scorch marks which were a result of an incendiary bomb during the Blitz. A music programme and other events are held at The Charterhouse and details of these are given on their web-site.