Advent and Christmas services and events

The four week season of Advent leading up to Christmas, marks the beginning of the Church’s year. Though Christmas carols are sung at many services through Advent, the season of Christmas itself really begins a few days before Christmas Day when the Cathedral, lit by thousands of candles, celebrates, at two great candlelit concerts, the coming of the child of Bethlehem.

Details of all our Cathedral music and services over this important period in the Church’s calendar can be found in our Music and Services List for November and December here. All activities taking place over the period, including concerts we’re hosting for other partners, are listed on our What’s On pages here. Alternatively you can refer to our Wells Cathedral What’s On Advent and Christmas 2017 web leaflet online or in the Cathedral.

Key service and event highlights include:

Wells Cathedral Advent Carol Service 

Sunday 3 December, 5-6.30pm

Our beautiful candlelit service of readings, traditional congregational Advent carols, and music for Advent, including Tavener’s Hymn to the Mother of God, and the world premiere of Stuart Beer’s Eight Magnificat Antiphons.  All welcome!

Cathedral Christmas Lunches in Vicars’ Hall 

Thursday 14 and Friday 15 December

Only £22.00 for 3 courses or £18.00 for 2 courses.  More details here. Booking required – call us on 01749 676543 or email us at

Wells Cathedral Candlelight Concerts 

Wednesday 20 and Thursday 21 December, 7.00pm

Limited tickets now available.  Call our Box Office on 01749 672773 for more information: opening hours are Monday to Saturday (10.30am – 4.30pm) and Sunday (11.30am – 4.30pm). 

Wells Cathedral Carol Services

Friday 22 and Saturday 23 December, 6.00pm

Wells Cathedral’s carol services, previously named by Classic fm magazine as the ‘Top choice’ in the South West, will take place on two days this year – Friday 22 and Saturday 23 December. Both services will start at 6.00pm. There will be plenty of congregational carols, as well as beautiful singing from the Cathedral choir, and festive readings. There is no entry charge and it is suggested people may wish to arrive early as it is very popular. The doors open at 5.00pm. and we request that you are be seated by 5.40pm.

Wells Cathedral Crib Services

Sunday 24 December, 2.00pm AND 3.15pm

A very warm welcome to the Cathedral’s crib services, especially to children who are invited to dress as a shepherd, or an angel or a King! We’ll have some dressing up clothes for children who will also be invited to take part in making our own real nativity scene in the Cathedral. Each service will last approximately 30 minutes.

Eucharist of Christmas Night

Sunday 24 December, 11.30pm

Midnight Mass with Vicars Choral and senior choristers.

Monday 25 December (Christmas Day) services

(the Cathedral is open until 1.00pm):

8.00am: Holy Communion

9.30am: Christmas Morning Eucharist

11.30am: Christmas Morning Matins

3.00pm: Evening Prayer Said (in the Close Chapel)

Tuesday 26 December (Boxing Day) services

(the Cathedral is open 10.00am – 4.00pm):

10.00am: Morning Liturgy

3.00pm: Evening Prayer said

All of our Christmas services are also listed on the A Church Near You website and we’re delighted to support the Church of England’s #godwithus Christmas campaign.