Gaunts Hospital was founded in 1220 by Sir Maurice de Berkeley Gaunt, the grandson of
Robert Fitzharding, the founder of St Augustine's Abbey, now Bristol Cathedral. The Hospital
was established to tend the sick, feed the needy and also to educate twelve poor boys. The Chapel
of St Mark was added in 1230, creating the Monastery of St Mark. The chapel was closed in 1539
with the Dissolution of the Monasteries and the land was later purchased by the Corporation of
Bristol. In 1590 the north transept and the monastic buildings were swept away when a new school
was built next to the chapel. This school was Queen Elizabeth's Hospital, which later moved to
St Bartholomew's. By 1722 the chapel had become dilapidated and the Mayor decided to restore
it and use it as a Corporation Chapel. In 1889 the architect John Loughborough Pearson, who also
designed Truro Cathedral and created Quar Wood in Lower Swell for Robert William Hippisley,
supervised a thorough restoration of the building, which included rebuilding the north transept.
The chapel subsequently become known as the Lord Mayor's Chapel and is the only
chapel in England owned and mainted by a city council.