The Community

Our community at Hilfield Friary is an intentional community of brothers of the First Order of the Society of St. Francis (an Anglican religious order with life-vowed members) together with men and women who commit themselves to share in the Franciscan life and wok of the friary.

Our life is centered around the chapel and the refectory; common prayer and meals eaten together are the framework for everything else that goes on here. We meet daily to plan and share the work of the Friary and regularly at other times to reflect on our life and take decisions about the community.


The life of the Friary relies almost completely on people offering their time, their work and their gifts either coming to us from home on a day-to-day basis or living with us for a time as part of the Hilfield Community. We welcome students in their gap year, people of any age searching for a new direction in their lives or wishing to experience Christian community, and Franciscan tertiaries who find themselves free of other commitments.

Volunteers need to have a statutory check for the safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults. There is a required safeguarding course, one on food hygiene and a first aid course.

If you live with us for a time, we provide board and lodging free, one day off a week, and £25 per week to cover your basic personal expenses.

So if you have at least six months to spare, are physically fit, and want to experience life in Christian community then get in touch with the Hilfield Guardian at or phone 01300 342312.

What you might be doing if you volunteer:

  • Organic gardening, growing vegetables and fruit.
  • Helping to care for livestock and manage the land, building fences and planting hedges.
  • Caring for the woodlands, coppicing and harvesting wood.
  • Conservation: helping to encourage diversity of plant and animal life.
  • Recycling
  • Caring for guests: welcoming, cooking food and cleaning guest rooms.
  • Helping in the kitchen, cooking and cleaning.
  • Using computer skills to help with publicity and office management.

Day volunteers

We are looking for local people who can offer a day per week (or per month) to help in the kitchen or garden or in the Hilfield shop. Please contact us to talk about this.

3 short films about Hilfield