Back in Time: Wall is all that remains of ancient monastery

The Friarage, Aylesbury, late 1950s
The Friarage, Aylesbury, late 1950s

Looking towards Rickford’s Hill from Bourbon Street in the late 1950s, the first building facing us on the left is The Friarage.

The site’s history goes back to the year 1386 when a Franciscan Grey Friars Monastery was established somewhere in the immediate vicinity. Friarage Passage, which runs down the side of the property, cut through the grounds.

A small piece of ancient stone wall is all that remains of this once vast site. It can be seen at the base of the side wall at the top of the passage.

The garden of The Friarage used to be much larger than it is today as it once stretched almost as far as the railway line. It was often used for garden fetes and other special occasions.

The building casting the shadow over Bourbon Street were Public Baths – a large Victorian building where locals could either have a wash or go swimming. At the time this photograph was taken it was empty and awaiting demolition. Friars Square now occupies the site. The other buildings seen here still remain and are used as offices for legal firm Parrott & Coales.