St Mary's Guildhall is one of the finest surviving examples of a Medieval Guildhall in the country.
First built in the 1340s for the merchant guild of St Mary it was enlarged between 1394 and 1414 and extensively embellished at the end of the 15th century. It was soon adopted as the headquarters of the Mayor and city leaders and the corporation of Coventry remained here until the 20th century when Coventry's present Council House was built. Royalty were frequently entertained at the Guildhall as guests of the Mayor and the City whilst Mary Queen of Scots was briefly captive here in 1569. It is almost certain that Shakespeare would have performed in the Great Hall on the occasions that his touring companies visited Coventry. Inside gives an insight into Coventry's past with collections of early arms and armour, furniture and artworks. The main attraction is the Great Hall with its medieval stained glass, a ceiling of carved angels and one of the most important tapestries in the country covering an entire wall.
No booking required.
Ground level access toilets. Stairs to Great Hall and Undercroft cafe with wheelchair lift available. Limited access to other rooms leading from Great Hall. Large print room sheets available on request. Limited disabled parking available in designated zones on Bayley Lane. Changing light conditions and floor surfaces throughout the building. The main building has ground floor pushchair/pram friendly access only due to spiral staircases.
Please see website for activities taking place. Historical musicians with also be playing with have a go opportunities.
City centre venue.