Group and Travel Trade

There is plenty for groups to see and enjoy at Wells Cathedral and Vicars’ Close.  Easily accessible from Bath, Bristol, Wales and the West Country, Wells makes an unforgettable and unique addition to your group’s itinerary.

Group visiting the Quire

Wells Cathedral is open to pre-booked groups on Monday-Saturday between 10.00am-3.30pm and Sunday between 12.30pm-1.30pm (note that no guided tours take place on Sunday however).

Group Visit Highlights Include:

• The magnificent West Front which contains one of the largest galleries of medieval sculpture in the world

• Our stunning scissor arches; a medieval solution to sinking tower foundations

• The second oldest surviving clock mechanism in Britain

• Vicars’ Close; the oldest continuously inhabited street in Europe

• Our impressive Chapter House and steps

• One of the most substantial collections of medieval stained glass in England including the Jesse window which narrowly escaped destruction during the English Civil War

• Recipient of TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence

The Nave and famous ‘Scissor Arches’ at Wells Cathedral The famous Chapter House steps  West Front

Book the Tour of Your Choice:

If you pre-book your group visit with us you will be guaranteed the services of one of our highly trained, experienced guides which can really add to the enjoyment of your visit. We will also be able to ensure we can accommodate the date and time of your choice.

Other benefits include:

  • A group rate of £4.75* (ex VAT) per head for a general tour (a saving on the ‘walk-in’ suggested donation rate)
  • Free tour guide (including foreign language guides)
  • 10% discount for all group members in the Cathedral café and in the Cathedral shops
  • Free place for the group organiser, tour manager or bus driver
  • Free familiarisation visit for the tour leader ahead of the visit
  • Option to pre-book leaflets

Tour Themes:

We can offer your group a General Guided Tour or choose instead from our comprehensive range of Special Interest Tours which are ready-made to provide your group with a themed tour of your choice.  A minimum of 8 people is required for these special interest tours, details are below:

Library – Wells Cathedral has one of the few chained libraries in Britain. It is especially attractive as it is still in its original location built in the 1450s, although the current bookshelves and chains are 17th Century.

 The Chained Library Quire Embroideries View from Lady to Chapel West

Embroideries – Wells Cathedral Quire contains over a hundred beautiful embroideries from the mid 20th century, as well as the magnificent Millennium set of altar frontals and vestments for every season of the church year.

Stained Glass - Wells Cathedral has one of the most substantial collections of medieval stained glass in England, the crowning glory being the Jesse window at the eastern end above the altar which narrowly escaped destruction during the English Civil War. The Cathedral also contains important and interesting glass from the 1500s, 1600s and the 1900s. (Please note that for stained glass tours binoculars are highly recommended as this will greatly increase the enjoyment of the experience; many images are high up and quite small!.

‘A Doorway into Gothic Architecture’ – Wells, England’s first Gothic Cathedral, is the work of an unknown designer who was a master mason of original genius and offers a ‘textbook’ of English medieval architecture without the dryness often associated with such works.

‘The Remarkable Wells Cathedral Stone Carvings’ – Cathedral Guides with specialist knowledge will tell the stories behind many of our stone carvings, with explanations of their dates and styles. You will also learn about the tools that were used and what is known of the master masons and carvers. Our tour will include the famous Wells Cathedral West Front, which has an international reputation for containing “the largest collection of medieval statues in the world.”

How to Book:

In order to ensure you benefit from the pre-booked groups rate and so that we are able to guarantee you a guide, pre-booking is essential. Our busy Cathedral diary means that we also ask for two week’s notice if possible. Remember – group organisers go free! Please note that availability of guides will be confirmed at latest two weeks prior to the date of the booked tour.

To discuss your requirements and to book your visit please call us on 01749 671663 or email us at [email protected]

Travelling to Wells and Parking:

Wells is easily reached by both car and public transport and there are several car parks within 5-10 minutes walk of the Cathedral. For more details click here.

For coaches, the Coach Park is located in Princes Road. Parking charges apply. Signage is plentiful from whichever direction you enter Wells: Princes Road Coach Park, Wells. BA5 2DT

If you have passengers that are less mobile a setting down point is in Sadler Street which is central to all the mentioned attractions: Sadler Street Setting Down Point, Wells, BA5 2RR

For more information on coach travel, including a map, our ‘meet and greet’ arrangements for your coach and where to refuel, click here.

Staying in Wells:

A number of accommodation providers can accommodate groups.  Click here for information.

Catering for Groups:

We can accommodate up to 96 people in the Cathedral’s light and airy café. If you would like to bring a group for morning coffee, lunch or afternoon tea please email our catering team at [email protected] or phone us on 01749 676543 for details.

For more information, including other catering options in Wells, click here.