Walking Dead Wiki

Attention! Please be aware that spoilers are not allowed on the wiki and a violation of this policy may result in a ban. Information (character deaths/fates, screenshots, etc.) from episodes released early on AMC+ may not be added to the wiki until the episode officially airs at 9pm EST on the Sunday it is scheduled for. Thank you.


Walking Dead Wiki
TWD 20100714 SG-6594.jpg This article is undergoing major changes and construction over a period of time.
Please be patient as it will undergo several new edits over time. You can help the Walking Dead Wiki by expanding it or providing any additional information on it.
This article is about the TV Series settlement. You may be looking for the Comic Series counterpart.

The Sanctuary is a location in AMC's The Walking Dead. It is the home and base of operations of the Saviors, and was formerly ruled by Negan Smith. After the war, Daryl Dixon took over leadership of the Sanctuary for 18 months before resigning. It was led by Carol Peletier for a time before Oceanside's retaliation caused a split in the communities again. Several months later, the Sanctuary had fallen with the surviving Saviors apparently either joining the other communities or Jed's group of rough raiders.[1] When Negan makes a return, the Sanctuary is completely abandoned with the courtyard overgrown with weeds and the main room trashed and partially flooded.


Nothing is known about the Sanctuary before or as the outbreak began, except that it was a factory.


At some point after the outbreak, the factory became the main headquarters for the Saviors. It remains as an anonymous location to the other communities.

It is more than a simple base for raiders, as it functions as a seemingly self-sustaining community as well. There are gardens, chicken coops, and a marketplace. There are many noncombatant members of the Saviors who work in the Sanctuary, such as gardeners, janitors and doctors.

The Sanctuary is surrounded by a chainlink fence, along with impaled walkers around the perimeter for added security. Enslaved survivors handle the dangerous task of putting these zombies in place. It appears that Sanctuary residents who die are reincorporated as walkers on the fence. When Eugene Porter became the Saviors' Chief Engineer, the walkers had molten iron poured over their heads to become indestructible.

After the Militia is formed, Rick Grimes leads an attack force against the Sanctuary. Even with makeshift barricades, attached to their cars, the Militia is no match for the Savior force at the Sanctuary. To counter this, they shoot out all of the windows, blow up an RV in front of the gate and lure a massive walker herd to it. As the Militia flees, the outside of the Sanctuary is overrun by the walkers.

Following an attack by Daryl and Tara that allows walkers to flood the Sanctuary, Eugene comes up with a plan that enables the Saviors to clear the Sanctuary of walkers and lead the rest of the herd away. With the Sanctuary now back under their full control, the Saviors launch a counterattack against the Militia.

Following the siege, the Saviors are stated to have expended much of their ammunition reserves to clear out the Sanctuary of walkers, forcing them to open the Bullet Factory Outpost to compensate. The Saviors also quickly repair the fences and once more set walkers up on them for protection. Following the death of Simon, he is chained to the fence with the other walkers.

After the defeat of the Saviors, the walkers are removed from the fence and presumably killed. The Sanctuary becomes open to the other communities who begin working together to rebuild. Most of the Saviors who defected to the Militia's side choose to return to Sanctuary, but Alden decides to remain at the Hilltop. Negan is taken to the Alexandria Safe-Zone as a prisoner and Daryl eventually takes over as the leader of the Sanctuary.

Eighteen months later, Daryl continues to reluctantly lead the Sanctuary with the help of Eugene and Jerry. However, things have begun to go bad despite continued supply runs from Alexandria. The crops have begun dying and people have begun painting "Saviors save us. We're still Negan" upon the walls. Rick later tells Maggie that "the Sanctuary is barely holding on" and desperately needs their help.

Six years after Rick's apparent death, the Sanctuary has gone "bust" according to Jed and the Saviors are disbanded. Several of the remaining Saviors such as Laura and D.J. have joined other communities, particularly Alexandria. Jed and Regina lead a group of around at least seven Savior Marauders that have become rough raiders before they are killed by Carol following a confrontation with her and Henry, ending the Saviors permanently. Its later confirmed that Alexandria opened its doors to the Sanctuary residents when it fell, meaning that many presumably relocated there. Furthermore, during the flashbacks in "Scars", Frankie and several Saviors are shown living in Alexandria during Michonne's pregnancy with R.J., indicating that the Sanctuary had fallen or began to fall apart in the months following the bridge's destruction in "What Comes After".

After escaping from Alexandria, Negan returns to the Sanctuary which is now completely abandoned. The courtyard is overgrown with weeds while the main room has various pieces of furniture scattered around and pools of standing water. Negan attempts to live alone in the Sanctuary for a short time, but realizes that there is no longer anything there for him after putting down a small group of walkers. Negan puts down Richie, a zombified Savior that had remained on the grounds and then abandons the Sanctuary for good, leaving on a motorcycle he retrieves from a hidden room and returning to Alexandria.

After the Kingdom falls, Michonne decides that the Kingdommers must take shelter from a massive blizzard in the Sanctuary, the only place close enough. However, while the group hunkers down, Michonne and Ezekiel recognize that they don't have enough supplies to wait out the storm in the Sanctuary. The group eventually leaves to reach the Hilltop by crossing through the Whisperers territory. After returning to Alexandria, Michonne comments to Negan that the Sanctuary is now a shithole. Negan agrees with the sentiment, stating that he could've told her that if she'd asked.

After following an escaped Negan from Alexandria, Brandon questions if Negan plans to create a new Sanctuary. Having lived there with his parents, Brandon comments on how cool the Sanctuary was, but Negan brushes him off.







  • The appearance of the Sanctuary, which is identical to the comic's counterpart, is based on the Willow Street Steam Generation Plant in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
  • In the Comic Series, the Sanctuary is still active, but is abandoned in the show.
  • Despite the Militia bringing new windows to repair the Sanctuary in "Wrath", the windows remain in their shot-out state for the rest of its appearances. No explanation is ever given for this.
  • In "Hostiles and Calamities", Laura asks Eugene what he wants to eat. Eugene asks if they have potato chips to which Laura says they do and that "Number Forty-Two", referring to an unnamed worker, is the one who makes it. After she reveals that Forty-Two makes it using a kettle, Eugene decides he no longer wishes to eat the chips.
  • After seeing the Tower in "Till Death", Sherry compares it to the Sanctuary.


  1. In Season 9 Episode 14 "Scars", Frankie and several Saviors are shown living in Alexandria during the flashbacks, indicating that the Sanctuary fell shortly after the bridge's destruction and during Michonne's pregnancy.