The Tithe Barn

The Tithe Barn is a 15th-century grade 2 star listed building inside the boundaries of Bolton Abbey Priory. It is the only surviving building of its kind in the local area, meaning the ground is part of a scheduled ancient monument.

Project type

Interior & Exterior Renovation

Building type

Listed Building


6 to 8 Months


This Project

Lion Construction were tasked with transforming this piece of history into a beautiful wedding venue, maintaining a rustic feel and providing plenty of character. This project required a huge amount of care and the help of a field archaeologist who overlooked the demolition and excavation work – ensuring the delicate work was carried out in the correct manner.

The whole internal floor had to be dug out to a depth of 500mm to allow for the build-up of glass fibre insulation and underfloor heating incorporated in the new slab, carefully battening back from external walls and posts which held the entire weight of the 1000m2 stone roof.

As part of the planning conditions, we were asked to reinstate a section of the original Yorkshire stone floor. This required us to carefully excavate and relay the flags using photographic records. The heritage status wasn’t the only challenging aspect of this renovation – we also had the existing tenants to contend with: the protected species of pipistrelle and natterer’s bats! They had chosen the beautiful Tithe Barn as their breeding spot and so our team resulted in building a bat-house next to the barn. The newly constructed bat-house had to be styled in the same way as the Tithe Barn to ensure familiarity when they returned in Spring.

The top of the barn has been entirely stripped and re-roofed, with the goal of making the building as acoustically resistant as possible. Once stripped we boarded the original roof in a special acoustic board, replacing roof members that were beyond repair along the way but with strict instruction to renew as little as possible. The roof was then insulated, membraned, battened, counter battened and then re-slated using primarily existing slates. The build-up of the roof meant that we had to raise the height of the external walls by approximately 400mm around the entire perimeter.

Externally we excavated the whole site to a depth of 450mm to allow for natural drainage and build-up of limestone layers, as well as adding new drainage and lighting for the car park. We then created the stunning landscape as per detailed specification from Gillespies landscape architects. Forming a new Grasscrete road from the southside, visitors would enter the car park surrounded in greenery with a teardrop-shaped island in the middle.

This project has resulted in a stunning wedding venue that has been a huge part of many couples special days, winning many awards in the process.

  • Before Renovation – Outside of the Barn

  • Before Renovation – Side of the Barn

  • Before Renovation – Inside of the Barn

  • During Renovation – Outside of the Barn

  • During Renovation – Outside of the Barn

  • During Renovation – Inside of the Barn

  • After Renovation – Outside of the Barn

  • After Renovation – Back Yard of the Barn

  • After Renovation – Back Yard of the Barn

  • After Renovation – View on Bolton Abbey from the Barn

  • After Renovation – Inside of the Barn

  • After Renovation – Inside of the Barn

  • After Renovation – Brand New Professional Kitchen for Catering Event


Case Studies

Take a look at some of the other projects Lion Construction have been a part of.