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Concentrating upon human activity and architectural function, we take our information from international history sources, local archives and the brochure ‘Monk Bretton Priory’ of 1986 by R Graham and R Gilyard-Beer.

Barnsley MBC’s Museums Education Officer has put together a multi-media education program to help schoolchildren learn more about the priory.There are information panels, edited by English Heritage, on site for daytime visitors. New articles on priory history are to be shown on this website.

We gloss, in plain English, mediaeval French, monastic terms that students need to know to understand this site. We have kept back other technical terms, such as dissolution, cellarage, chartularies and frankalmoins for formal educational talks. Learn more...

Board Games


Nine-man Merels became popular in Europe only a few hundred years ago, although a three-man game has been played for over three thousand years. In Germany it is still played as Mill.

Take turns to put one man on any empty point where lines meet. If you get three in a row on one line and say you have made “mill”, you can take any of your opponent’s men that is not in a mill.

After all your men are in play you can move any one man one point along each go, trying to make mill again and taking any free enemy piece every time you do.

This goes on until one player is down to two men or until one player gets blocked in and cannot move.

Fox and Geese

Having unmatched sides, Fox and Geese is a northern Tafl game, as played from Germany through North Sea and North Atlantic cultures to Iceland. (Hare and Hounds follows that tradition).

Set out thirteen geese on points where lines meet, all at one end as shown. Choose who will play Fox, which may begin on any other point. Geese go first. Taking turns, Fox or any goose may move one point at a time along a line north, south, east or west.

If Fox gets next to a goose and jumps over it on to an empty point beyond, that goose is then taken off. Fox cannot take two or more geese together in one jump.

Fox wins by taking so many geese that his opponent gives in. Geese win by trapping Fox so that he cannot move.



Contact Details

Friends of Monk Bretton Priory
PO BOX 1000
S70 1AA