HIGH PARTS TOURS

Climb the spiral staircase to walk in the footsteps of Wells Cathedral masons with new behind-the-scenes tours of Wells Cathedral’s High Parts; one of the most memorable things to do in Wells!

“If you’re reading this go online and book the high parts tour… it’s a fascinating 90 min tour of the upper areas of the cathedral … you won’t be disappointed!” (TripAdvisor feedback)

Tour participants will discover hidden spaces, galleries and chambers including behind the Wells clock (considered to be the second oldest clock mechanism in Britain) and one of only two surviving medieval tracing floors in the country where masons drew designs of areas of the building on the floor. The route will take in a walk along the singing gallery, discover Wells Cathedral’s trumpet holes, explore the south transept roof space and allow participants to marvel at the nave from a very different perspective!

Tours will run regularly throughout the week and places can be pre-booked here on Cathedral’s website or via the link below.

Who can book:

The maximum number in any upper levels tour is 12 . Children under the age of 10 years are not permitted on the tour. Children between the ages of 10 and 16 years must be accompanied by one adult for every two children, unless they are part of an organised youth group when at least two adults must be in attendance.

Any visitors with a fear of heights or confined spaces and/in poor health should consider carefully their suitability for the tour. There are up to 250 steps, uneven floors, low ceilings and the narrowest point is just 60cm (2ft.) wide. The tour route does not include access to the top of the tower.

Visitor Safety Instructions and Terms and Conditions:

Please read this information carefully as you will be expected to comply with all restrictions and requirements listed below; the Cathedral wishes you to have an enjoyable and safe tour experience and we are grateful for your co-operation. A copy of Visitor Safety Instructions and Terms and Conditions can also be downloaded here.  Also note that this is a busy, working Cathedral so on occasion there may be some noise from other activities taking place, but this should be minimised due to the nature of the tour route.

  • Before you commence the High Parts Tour you will be asked to provide your name and age range to assist in the safe operation of the tour.
  • Your signature will also be the acceptance that you have read and understood the visitor safety instructions and terms and conditions. The responsible adult will be asked to sign on behalf of children under the age of 18 on the tour.
  • Any visitors with a fear of heights or confined spaces and/or in poor health should consider carefully their suitability for the tour.
  • We request that all asthma sufferers bring their inhalers with them on the tour.
  • Children and adults must be able to ascend and descend the tour unaided.
  • There are up to 250 steps, uneven floors, low ceilings and the narrowest point is just 60cm (2ft.) wide.
  • The stairs are steep and narrow in places; therefore it is essential you wear suitable clothing and footwear and so not carry handbags or rucksacks or anything with a strap, including cameras. Secure storage will be provided. High heels, flip flops, in bare feet will not be admitted on the tour. Sandals must be securely fastened front and back.
  • The maximum number in any upper levels tour is 12 and children under the age of 10 years are not permitted on the tour.
  • Children between the ages of 10 and 16 years must be accompanied by one adult for every two children, unless they are part of an organised youth group when at least two adults must be in attendance.
  • Smoking and/or using mobile phones for anything other than taking photographs is not permitted during the tour. Visitors must exercise caution when taking photographs and should not lean over barriers or step backwards to get a better picture.
  • Once the tour has started there will be no opportunity for a comfort break.
  • The lead Cathedral Guide is in charge of the tour; anyone not following the Guide’s instruction will be escorted back to the ground floor level while the rest of the group wait.

The tour is not recommended for any of the following visitors:

  • Those with breathing difficulties
  • Those with heart conditions
  • Those with joint problems
  • Those with balance problems
  • Those with reduced mobility
  • Those who are pregnant
  • Those who have any other medical condition which could put them at risk, or be worsened by the tour
  • Any visitors with a fear of heights or confined spaces and/or in poor health should consider carefully their suitability for the tour.

The lead Cathedral Guide is in charge of the tour; anyone not following the Guide’s instruction will be escorted back to the ground floor level while the rest of the group wait.

The Cathedral reserves the right to refuse any visitor admittance on the tour if deemed to be in breach of any of the above. This will be for your safety and for the safety of others. The Cathedral’s decision is final and is not subject to appeal.

How to book:

Bookings can be made via the website up to 24 hours prior to the tour taking place; click on the month of your choice below to choose your preferred day and time.  Or check availabilty at the Donation desk when you arrive at the Cathedral.

August 2018

September 2018

October 2018