Living as a Member

What is it like to live at

Archbishop Holgate Hospital?

In our beautiful self-contained hamlet setting, Archbishop Holgate Hospital Hemsworth charity has over 450 years’ experience of accommodating, supporting and caring for older people in need from our local parishes.


All of our residents live independently in one of our almshouse cottages, which provide for single or married couple occupancy.

Independent almshouse cottages

In the accommodation our charity, through our on-site Matron,  provides a daily check-in system to support residents. This is similar to a Warden-controlled housing is a type of sheltered housing. Our Matron is not an NHS style member of nursing staff. The Matron lives on-site in the Porters Lodge and there is an on call and out of hours 24hr cover call system in each cottage. With this retirement housing, you always have someone living nearby if you ever need a bit of help or if there’s an emergency.


If needs increase the Matron will work with you to ensure that you access the local care services and support services you need to enable you to continue to live independently, for as long as possible.


Residents are known as Bothers and Sisters as outlined in Archbishop Robert Holgate’s Last Will and Testament.  They are encouraged and enabled to live happy and fulfilling lives, as independently as possible, supported by our dedicated Porter, Matron and Master.


Our founder Archbishop Holgate devised the original scheme by which residents were expected to live. Many of the elements of the original vision are embraced in the way we live today.  These expectations outline what good community living looks and feels like: being neighbourly, kind and respectful, and supporting each other. This links clearly to the Christian values and foundation that underpins our way of life at Archbishop Holgate Hospital.

Independent Living

Archbishop Holgate Hospital is set out as a community of one and two-bedroom almshouse cottages, suitable for single people and married couples.

Their central location means that all almshouses are in easy reach of the Chapel and the new community space Ebor Hall for the services and social opportunities that our Hospital has to offer. However as residents’ needs change, the Master and the Matron are on hand to advise and signpost further help. This will enable residents to remain in their home for as long as they are able to and wish to.

Cottages are offered on an unfurnished basis and feature the following:

  • Lounge
  • Kitchen
  • Shower and toilet
  • Central heating and smoke alarms
  • All cottages have an internal and external storage area 
  • A small garden border area on the front of the cottage (The size of this varies dependant on the property)
  • A TV aerial and phone point*

* Residents are responsible for arranging their own services and managing their contracts with providers

The Hospital has a Porter who can assist with minor maintenance and repairs.

Independent Living inside of cottage

The Hospital Setting

The Hospital is located between the towns of Barnsley and Pontefract near Hemsworth on the rural edge of South Heindley. The grounds near the cottages are formally set out with lawns and borders. The hamlet setting benefits from the woodland areas, Yew tree lined paths, a walled garden, orchards including individual cottage allotments. The central lawns provide access for wellbeing and recreational activities including church services and croquet. The grounds are maintained by the Trust with renowned eco-systems of scientific interest. 

The hospital setting outside

How can I apply to live at

Archbishop Holgate Hospital ?

Applications are welcomed from those in need living in local parishes in accordance with our charitable purpose. Most of our accommodation is only available to people over 60 years. The Master and the Hospital Electors panel will require evidence of this as part of your application.

Archbishop Holgate Hospital Sign

We do not offer high-dependency nursing care at the Hospital, and we are not able to support those with a diagnosis of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. If someone develops dementia or Alzheimer’s disease whilst living at the Hospital we will support them and their family through the process of transition to a new place of care to meet their needs.


To qualify as a resident (Brother and or Sister) at the Hospital under the terms of our charity, you will:

  • be 60 years or over


  • live in one of our listed local communities the ‘Area of Benefit‘*


  • have a defined housing need including, not limited to:
    • at risk of involuntary homelessness
    • medical or welfare need which is exacerbated by your present accommodation.
    • currently renting privately on a shorthold tenancy, with lack of security of housing in the future.
    • have another social need which would be helped by community living.


*  “The Area of Benefit” means the parishes of Ackworth, Badsworth, Havercroft with Cold Heindley, Hemsworth, Noastll (incorporating Hessle and Hill Top, Huntwick with Foulby and Nostell and West Hardwick), Ryehill, South Elmsall, South Heindley, South Kirkby and Moorthorpe, Thorpe Audlin, Upton and North Elmsall and Wintersett, all in the County of West Yorkshire, and Brierley, Hampole, Skelbrooke, and Shafton and the township of Cudworth in the County of South Yorkshire. You can locate your local parish using the and use your home postcode in full or use the ‘get my location’ option on this webpage to get an accurate result.


If you think you qualify and would like to explore this further contact us