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In the 1980s a group of yoga practitioners conceived of a purpose-built centre in which to hold classes and retreats in West Cork. This led to the incorporation of ‘Satsang Ashram Trust’ in 1989. After some years of fund-raising, with the help of a grant from the Enterprise Board and a bank loan, they were able to purchase the land on which An Sanctóir now stands near Ballydehob village.

Planning permission was received in 1994 and the building was completed in 1996. Since many other practices and activities besides yoga had found a home here, in 1998 the name ‘An Sanctóir’ was chosen from among many suggestions by the community. Charitable status was received in 2000.

In its years of operation An Sanctóir has grown from strength to strength thanks to the support of an ever-evolving group of volunteers. In 2007 we survived extensive damage to the floor caused by burst pipework. This stimulated us to improve kitchen facilities, foyer and wheelchair accessibility.


An Sanctóir is a registered Charity (CHY13347) managed by a Trust in the form of a legally incorporated, non-profit making, limited liability company. The Trustees carry the responsibility for the day to day running and the long term health and growth of An Sanctóir, with the support of an Office Administrator who is funded on a local employment scheme. The Trustees meet once a month as well as bringing their skills to help in a practical way – fund raising, building, maintenance, working on the land, creating and inspiring new ventures for An Sanctóir.

Our trustees are: Dan Gray, Lorna Riorden, Mikael Fernstrom, Patricia O'Sullivan, Rik Appleby, Raquel Carmelo, Suzie Keogh.

Our Office Administrator is: Katarina Sudikova.

Community Employment

We are lucky to have one participant on the Community Employment Scheme – Community Work Placement Initiative and are currently looking to fill a place on the Tús Scheme programme run by West Cork Development Partnership. We have enjoyed a long relationship with both of these programs which  have helped to find and fund a long list of people who have given their time and energy to the running of An Sanctóir.  Their contributions to An Sanctóir include the running of the office, and cleaning and maintaining the building, garden and land.

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