Bonnevaux means Good Valley – and in this gentle valley of meadows, woods, lake and river are a cluster of buildings waiting to be restored and revitalised into a peaceful contemplative centre.
On the ancient foundations of a Benedictine monastery built here nearly a thousand years ago, our vision to build a contemplative community for the 21st century is being realised with your help and support.
Having acquired the property at the end of 2017 thanks to the generosity of all our donors, we can now turn our attention to creating a welcoming space for future guests. The buildings as they stand are in various stages of disrepair but here is a glimpse of our future plans:
The foundations of the Main House go back to the 12th century and was remodelled in the 19th century. It will be restored to become a home for the core community who will run Bonnevaux. It will also provide some accommodation for guests.
The current Barn will be converted into a Meditatio Conference Centre for our seminars, retreats and workshops providing seating for 180 people and smaller break-out rooms.
This will become the main Guesthouse providing accommodation for 50+ people. The Stables will also provide space for the office, a bookshop and a Visitors Centre.
These semi-derelict buildings will be converted into self-contained guest units.
The long term vision is to create Contemplative cells in the grounds for residents who may wish to make longer retreats.
Gardens, Woods and Lake
The grounds are beautiful and extensive. With plans to develop an organic kitchen garden and a medicinal herb garden, work on the land will be continuous and ongoing by visitors and enthusiastic volunteers.
The plan for the development of Bonnevaux to its full potential will proceed by phases for each of which funding continues to be needed. Essential work has started in February 2018 and we aim to complete Phase One by the end of 2019. However we do hope to finish the renovation to the Main House and Barn by Spring 2019 so that we can welcome guests and start our program of retreats and events.