Downside Abbey Press

The Benedictines are one of the greatest scholarly orders of the Catholic Church and number many of the great scholars in the history of Western Civilisation.

The Monastic Community of Downside has continuously produced books from its inception in 1606, until the present day.

Until the 1960’s Downside Abbey Press publications were physically produced by monks, on site. Nowadays, titles are written and edited within the monastery before being printed externally. All profits from books sold help to fund the work in local parishes and future publications. 

Our recent titles include:

The Webbs of Odstock

The Webb family of Odstock, which is near Salisbury and of Canford in Dorset, has been described as among the richest commoner families of England. Eventually they owned property throughout the country, often as a result of marriage into other Catholic families. They originated in Poole and first became wealthy in Salisbury. They had homes in Northamptonshire and West Sussex as well as in Wiltshire and Dorset. Even so their story has often been overlooked. The story of the Webbs finishes after Catholic Emancipation and provides an unusually detailed insight into what was the effect of their Catholic faith on a colourful and devoted family from the split of Henry VIII from Rome until the comparative calm of the Victorian era.

Downside Abbey Discovers: Bristol Georgian Cookbook

A major discovery in the Monastery Archives  so far is the Begbrook House Kitchen Cookbook, written circa 1793. Begbrook House was in Frenchay, Bristol, and owned during the middle of the 19th century by the Parsons family one of whom, Daniel, donated his collection to Downside in 1887.

Convert, Scholar, Bishop: William Brownlow

This long-needed biography takes us on a fascinating journey through Victorian Anglicanism and Catholicism in England, Wales, Italy and Ireland and missions in West Africa and Australia. Brownlow was Bishop of Clifton and best known in his day for publicising and interpreting the momentous discoveries of the catacombs in Rome.

Monks in the Military: Benedictine Chaplains in the British Armed Forces during the Twentieth Century

This is the story of those Benedictines from the abbeys and priories of the English Benedictine Congregation and from British houses of other European Benedictine Congregations who served as chaplains to the British Armed Forces in the twentieth century.