Wells Cathedral in Somerset – England

A trip to Wells Cathedral is worth the effort if you are in Somerset, England. It is the only church in the UK to still possess a Bishop’s Palace and Vicars Close. It is one of the top attractions in the area.

How to Get There

Wells is 20 mi from Bristol. From M5 South, depart at Junction 23 and go to A29. If you are at the South East, go to A303. If you are coming from Bristol, the journey takes about half an hour.

The closest train station is Castle Cary. It has direct services to the West County and London Paddington. This is 13 mi from Wells. Taxis are also available near the station. Bus services include Bristol (No. 376) and Bath (No. 173); The Bristol Airport is 20 mi away from Wells.

What to See

The church has some of the finest stained glass windows in the UK. The oldest stained glass dates from 1280–90. There is also some stained glass from 1310–1320. The choir east window is silver. There are figures of saints on the sides.

Aside from the stained glass, the cathedral has numerous monuments. There are also several tombs of noblemen and bishops. At the Entry Chamber is at the West Front. You can buy some CDs, gifts, postcards and guidebooks.


A trip to Wells Cathedral is best appreciated by knowing some of its history. King Ine of Wessex had the church built in 705. This was done at the prodding of Bishop Aldhelm of Sherbone. The cathedral would be dedicated to Saint Andrew. However, this church would fall into ruins.

Some remains of the foundation have been unearthed.
The current edifice was started under the guidance of Bishop Reginald de Bohun. The current cathedral dates primarily from the 12th to early 13th century. Records show that most of the cathedral was finished by 1239.


Admission to the cathedral is free. However, donations will be accepted. Any amount will be sufficient. As a guideline, adults may give 6 Pounds, students and children 3 Pounds and senior citizens 4 Pounds.

If you want to take pictures, you need the permit from the Info Desk. Permit for cameras and video cost 3 Pounds. It is open 7.00 am-7.00 pm from April-September. From October-March it is open 7.00 am-6.00 pm.

Before you go on a trip to Wells Cathedral, remember that flash photography is not permitted. Recording is also not allowed when there is a service.