Guildford Convent was founded in 1274 by Eleanor of Provence, widow of Henry III. The monks of the monastery were Dominicans, known as "black monks" for their robes. They lived mainly by alms and used the monastery as a base for small outlets to pray around. The convent building was demolished in 1538 and in its place a mansion was built, called The Convent. Again the building disappeared, this time it was broken down to make way for industrial development. In 1860 a new building was constructed to house a local brewery. It closed in the 1970s and was demolished for a new commercial center - The Convent, which opened in 1983.