Cathedral Opening Times
April - September
7am - 7pm
October - March
7am – 6pm
English Cathedrals receive no regular funding from the Government or the Church of England towards maintenance, restoration and development work. Here at Wells that means we have to raise £4,500 per day which we must do through our own endeavours and with the help of visitors, the congregation and supporters.
The Cathedral therefore relies on donations from visitors or ask about the Wells Cathedral Annual Pass and Wells Heritage Pass.
The Cathedral café is open from 10am – 4pm and 11am-4pm on Sundays.
The shop is open 10am – 5pm (Monday to Saturday) and 11am – 4pm (Sunday) from April to September and 10am – 4.30pm (Monday to Saturday) and 11am – 4.00pm (Sunday) from October to March.
For the Chained Library and Reading Room opening times, please click here.
Occasionally the Cathedral, or parts of it, may need to close or only offer restricted access for a service, special event, filming or general maintenance. We try to minimise these periods as much as we can, as we know that people may travel long distances to visit us. Organ tuning also takes place from 10.45am to 4.00pm on certain dates and can be un-tuneful and noisy! These dates are subject to change but the list is updated throughout the year.
Please therefore check the Closures and Restrictions page for any last minute changes prior to your visit. However Wells Cathedral is a working church and some events may have to be arranged at short notice so the list below may not be exhaustive. The What’s On page may also be helpful for planning your trip or call reception on 01749 674483.
The East End of the Cathedral starts to close from 4pm onwards to prepare for the Evensong service. The Quire closes at 4pm (*3.45pm when we have a visiting choir) the remainder of the East End closes at 4.30pm and the Chapter House closes at 4.55pm.
During summer opening times (April – September) all will re-open when Evensong has ended at approx 6.15pm.
Guide dogs, hearing dogs and assistance dogs are welcome in the Cathedral at all times. Other dogs are welcome in the Cathedral providing they are on a lead, well-behaved and accompanied at all times by their owner(s). There is no provision for dogs to be left with staff or volunteers and any dogs who bark consistently or are in distress/are disruptive can be asked to leave with their owners. Dogs are not allowed on any tour that goes above ground-level (which includes the Library and High Parts Tours). Water bowls are available in the Cathedral and dog biscuits are available for sale in the cafe.
We are committed to making Wells Cathedral accessible to all but, like many historic buildings, there may be some access issues. More information can be found here.
As the needlework of the embroideries in the Quire is so delicate, we ask that you do not use flash photography. We also do not allow our services to be photographed or recorded.
Wells Cathedral Annual Pass and Wells Heritage Pass:
Anyone wishing to make a donation to the Cathedral and enjoy fast-track access for 12 months via the Cathedral’s Donation Desk can purchase a Wells Cathedral ‘Annual Pass’. Annual Pass purchasers will also be given a free tea/coffee voucher for the Cathedral cafe (single use).
The Annual Pass costs £15 and is valid for one year from the date of purchase. To purchase an Annual Pass please come to the Donation Desk in the Cathedral between 10am-4pm (11am-3pm Sunday).
Or ask about the new Wells Heritage Pass which is £40 for an individual and which gives unlimited access for one year to Wells Cathedral, The Bishop’s Palace and the Wells & Mendip Museum, plus a 10% discount in the shops.