Nearest Accommodation to Wells Cathedral: Self Catering   -   B&Bs/Guesthouses   -   Hotels, More The bottom layers show statues of saints and worthies of Wells, angels and figures from Bible stories. [86] The walls are lined with deep niches framed by narrow shafts with capitals and annulets like those of the portal. [32], Later changes include the Perpendicular vault of the tower and construction of Sugar's Chapel, 1475–1490 by William Smyth. Each quarter hour, an amusing little character called Jack Blandifers emerges from within the clock and strikes two bells with hammers, then two with his heels. Muchelney Priest's HouseHistoric Building, Bath   Glastonbury   Wells   Oare   Selworthy   Dunster, 7a Cathedral Green The column is surrounded by shafts of Purbeck Marble, rising to a single continuous rippling foliate capital of stylised oak leaves and acorns, quite different in character from the Early English stiff-leaf foliage. The Diocese of Bath and Wells is a diocese in the Church of England Province of Canterbury in England.. [111] The vaults of the aisles of the choir also have a unique pattern. [93] The base is penetrated by three doors, which are in stark contrast to the often imposing portals of French Gothic cathedrals. He oversaw the building of Vicars' Close and the Vicars' Hall, to give the men who were employed to sing in the choir a secure place to live and dine, away from the town and its temptations. Photo Credit: David Ross and Britain Express. [42] Strainer arches, sometimes described as scissor arches, were inserted by master mason William Joy to brace and stabilise the piers as a unit. [85] The façade is wide, with its towers extending beyond the transepts on either side. Much of the cathedral, including the nave and the west front is built from the Inferior Oolite. In 1620 an organ built by Thomas Dallam was installed at a cost of £398 1s 5d. The most famous of the carvings is a sequence called The Wages of Sin that decorates a large clustered pier like a cartoon strip. The Café and Shop are closed, but the Cathedral remains open for individual prayer, … Vicar's Close is the oldest intact medieval street in Europe. [64][94] The restoration of the façade revealed much paint adhering to the statues and their niches, indicating that it had once been brightly coloured.[64]. The central tower, nave and south transept seen from the cloister garth. A staircase leads from the cathedral (right) to the chapter house and the Chain Gate which gives access to Vicars Close. 1.8 miles (Historic Building), Emborough, Blessed Virgin Mary Church - One gives entrance to the Bishop's Palace grounds. Some quite obviously represent important people; church officials or patrons perhaps. One shows a man in the grips of a horrible toothache, another shows workers in a vineyard, another depicts a lizard eating berries. [9] The east end retains much ancient stained glass. Medieval (Time Period) - Built in the 13th century and attributed to Thomas Norreys, this extraordinary piece of work is really art on a very, very grand scale. 1.8 miles (Countryside), Burcott Mill - 79,991 were here. Here For You During COVID-19 NEW! [87] As at Chichester, there is no northern range to the cloisters. Printed on 100% cotton watercolour textured paper, Art Prints would be at home in any gallery. [157], The library above the eastern cloister was built between 1430 and 1508. The walls of the chapter house have fifty-one niches for seating. The vault of the choir has a unique form perhaps patterned on wooden roofs. The horizontal line of the nave is emphasised by the unbroken galleries. [89] At Wells, later changes in the Perpendicular style were universally applied, such as filling the Early English lancet windows with simple tracery, the construction of a parapet that encircles the roof, and the addition of pinnacles framing each gable, similar to those around the chapter house and on the west front. Other large figures, including that of Christ, occupy the gable. The stairs to the chapter house and Vicars' Close. Wells Cathedral is a striking landmark in the South West and well worth a visit if you have extended time in the area. [69], Employed staff include the organist and master of choristers, head virger, archivist, librarian and the staff of the shop, café and restaurant. [126], Some of the cathedral's fittings and monuments are hundreds of years old. 3.2 miles, - [51] He was buried in an unmarked grave in the choir before the dean's stall. [32] Concurrent with this work, in 1329–45 Joy made alterations and extensions to the choir, joining it to the Lady Chapel with the retrochoir, the latter in the Flowing Decorated style. Serving delicious locally-sourced homemade food and some of the best coffee and cake you will find in Wells. The medieval stone pulpitum screen was extended in the centre to support a new organ. Although naked, some of the dead are defined as royalty by their crowns and others as bishops by their mitres. [74], Three Sunday services are led by the resident choir in school terms and choral services are sung on weekdays. Norreys' original design called for towers topped by spires rising on each side of the screen, but these were never built, perhaps due to lack of funds or the death of the designer. [126][127] Many of the subjects carry traditional interpretations. map The finished product has been criticised for its lack of pinnacles, and it is probable that the towers were intended to carry spires which were never built. Matthew Owens was the appointed organist from 2005-2019. High quality Wells Cathedral inspired Art Prints by independent artists and designers from around the world. Before you is one of the most glorious examples of medieval architecture in England; the west front of Wells Cathedral. [32] The tower was later braced internally with arches by William Joy. Wells Cathedral Wells. The particular character of this Early English interior is dependent on the proportions of the simple lancet arches. The second clock face has two quarter jacks (which strike on the quarter-hour) in the form of knights in armour. [126] One misericord, showing a boy pulling a thorn from his foot, dates from the 17th century. [86], The exterior of Wells Cathedral presents a relatively tidy and harmonious appearance since the greater part of the building was executed in a single style, Early English Gothic. Victorian (Time Period) -, Heritage Rated from 1- 5 (low to exceptional) on historic interest, Wells Bishop's Palace - We recommend booking Wells Cathedral tours ahead of time to secure your spot. [86] Despite its lack of spires or pinnacles, the architectural historian Banister Fletcher describes it as "the highest development in English Gothic of this type of façade."[95]. Another well-known carving is in the north transept aisle: a foliate corbel, on which climbs a lizard, sometimes identified as a salamander, a symbol of eternal life. [122], The 15th-century cloisters have many small bosses ornamenting the vault. [27] Jocelin died at Wells on 19 November 1242 and was buried in the choir of the cathedral;[25][26][28] the memorial brass on his tomb is one of the earliest brasses in England. The Café and Shop are closed, but the Cathedral remains open for individual prayer, … [130][165] Buildings in the close include the Vicars Hall and gateway at the south end, and the Vicars Chapel and Library at the north end.[166][167]. Calendar Today at the Cathedral. [60] Anthony Salvin took charge of the extensive restoration of the choir. We recommend booking Wells Cathedral tours ahead of time to secure your spot. 46 Restaurants within 0.3 miles. Shop unique cards for Birthdays, Anniversaries, Congratulations, and more. A hundred yards along you pass under an arch and to your left is Vicar's Close, built in the 14th century for vicars serving the cathedral. 2.9 miles, - According to art historian John Harvey, it is the first truly Gothic cathedral in the world, its architects having entirely dispensed with all features that bound the contemporary east end of Canterbury Cathedral and the earlier buildings of France, such as the east end of the Abbey of Saint Denis, to the Romanesque. [129] Many depict animals, some of which may symbolise a human vice or virtue, or an aspect of faith. [6], Its Gothic architecture is mostly in Early English style of the late 12th – early 13th centuries, lacking the Romanesque work that survives in many other cathedrals. The St Andrew's Cross arches seen from the transept. The Café and Shop are closed, but the Cathedral remains open for individual prayer, … The throne was restored by Anthony Salvin around 1850. [19] There is, however, some controversy over this. [159] The chapter's earlier collection was destroyed during the Reformation, so that the present library consists chiefly of early printed books, rather than medieval manuscripts. Two windows in the south choir aisle are from 1310–20. The other windows have complete canopies, but the pictorial sections are fragmented. Wells Cathedral Wells. A gallery of royalty fills the niches of the north west buttresses, with clerics on the south west. During the 14th century, the east end of the church was almost entirely rebuilt, and the central tower finished. [90], The west front is 100 feet (30 m) high and 147 feet (45 m) wide,[91] and built of Inferior Oolite of the Middle Jurassic period, which came from the Doulting Stone Quarry, about 8 miles (13 km) to the east. The external clock has a pair of quarter-jacks in the shape of armoured knights. According to Cockerell, the side of the façade that is to the south of the central door is the more sacred and the scheme is divided accordingly. The boys and girls sing alternately with the Vicars Choral and are educated at Wells Cathedral School. Somerset, The houses are occupied, so you can't peer inside them, but you can freely wander along the Close and enjoy the peaceful ambience, cut off from the sights and sounds of the outside world. [150], The cathedral is home to Wells Cathedral Oratorio Society (WCOS), founded in 1896. [148], In December 2010 Wells Cathedral Choir was rated by Gramophone magazine as "the highest ranking choir with children in the world". A smaller organ, probably for the Lady Chapel, was installed in 1415. The north transept with its Medieval clock face, the north porch and north-west tower. [114], The Lady Chapel has a vault of complex and somewhat irregular pattern, as the chapel is not symmetrical about both axes. [12][13] It was dedicated to St Andrew and stood at the site of the cathedral's cloisters, where some excavated remains can be seen. Together they constitute the finest display of medieval carving in England. Website +44 1749 674483. Each capital is different, and some contain small figures illustrating narratives. Also, Gothic Revival renovations were made to the choir and pulpitum by Benjamin Ferrey and Anthony Salvin, 1842–1857. [126][127] Its clergy has a long tradition of singing or reciting from the Book of Psalms each day, along with the customary daily reading of the Holy Office. In 1197 Reginald's successor, Savaric FitzGeldewin, with the approval of Pope Celestine III, officially moved his seat to Glastonbury Abbey. Wells Cathedral. High quality Wells Cathedral gifts and merchandise. Jocelin continued the building campaign begun by Reginald and was responsible for the Bishop's Palace, the choristers' school, a grammar school, a hospital for travellers and a chapel. [47][48], Elizabeth I gave the chapter and the Vicars Choral a new charter in 1591, creating a new governing body, consisting of a dean and eight residentiary canons with control over the church estates and authority over its affairs, but no longer entitled to elect the dean (that entitlement thenceforward belonged ultimately to the Crown). No sooner had the great central tower been finished than it became obvious that its weight was too great for the crossing. Wells Cathedral Cathedral Green, Wells BA5 2UE England. If you book with Tripadvisor, you can cancel up to 24 hours before your tour starts for a full refund. There is a sculpture of the Virgin and Christ Child above the west door. The 1620 organ was destroyed by parliamentary soldiers in 1643. The path to the north porch is lined by four sculptures in Purbeck stone, each by Mary Spencer Watson, representing the symbols of the Evangelists. Its repertoire ranges from the choral music of the Renaissance to recently commissioned works. Decorated (Architecture) - Wells Cathedral Wells. Charles Wells Ltd, a vertically integrated British regional brewer; HMS Wells, a British naval fighting ship; Struell Wells, a set of four holy wells in Struell, Northern Ireland; Wells and Fakenham Railway was a railway line in Norfolk, England; Wells Cathedral, in Wells, Somerset Wells Cathedral is an Anglican cathedral in Wells, Somerset, England, dedicated to St Andrew the Apostle and seat of the Bishop of Bath and Wells, whose cathedra it holds as mother church of the Diocese of Bath and Wells. Similar Images . [130], The monuments and tombs include Gisa, bishop, †1088; William of Bitton, bishop, †1274; William of March, bishop, †1302; John Droxford, †1329; John Godelee, †1333; John Middleton, died †1350; Ralph of Shrewsbury, died †; John Harewell, bishop, †1386; William Bykonyll, †c. [121] In the transepts and towards the crossing in the nave the capitals have many small figurative carvings among the leaves. One of the foremost architects of his time, Wynford worked for the king at Windsor, Winchester Cathedral and New College, Oxford. [143] Malcolm Archer was the appointed Organist and Master of the Choristers in 1996–2004. [138], The cathedral also has a chamber organ, built by the Scottish organ-builders Lammermuir, which is normally kept in the choir but which can be moved around for services and concerts. [4] It has been called "unquestionably one of the most beautiful"[5] and "most poetic" of English cathedrals. [7] The stonework of its pointed arcades and fluted piers bears pronounced mouldings and carved capitals in a foliate, "stiff-leaf" style. This horizontal emphasis is counteracted by six strongly projecting buttresses defining the cross-sectional divisions of nave, aisles and towers, and are highly decorated, each having canopied niches containing the largest statues on the façade. [4], Wells Cathedral has a square east end to the choir, as is usual, and like several other cathedrals including Salisbury and Lichfield, has a lower Lady Chapel projecting at the eastern end, begun by Thomas Witney in about 1310, possibly before the chapter house was completed. The Greek Taverna (653) 4 min ££ - £££ Mediterranean. As a consequence of the national lockdown all public worship, tours, concerts, and other events are suspended in Wells Cathedral until Wednesday 2nd December 2020 inclusive. Other musicians … [4] There is a large projecting porch on the north side of the nave forming an entry into the cathedral. Similar Images . When the bells strike, a pair of jousting knights emerge above the clock face. Ceiling Wells Cathedral. But your walls are better. [52] During the Commonwealth of England under Oliver Cromwell no dean was appointed and the cathedral fell into disrepair. Typically the themes are less unified or directly related to the Bible and Christian theology than small sculptures seen elsewhere within churches, such as bosses. So striking are the arches that they almost overshadow the wonderful symmetry of the nave arcades, and the highly decorated piers, which have arguably the finest stiff-leaf foliage carving in England. The first record of an organ at this church dates from 1310. Children have been educated at Wells Cathedral School for over a thousand years, in what has to be one of the world’s most beautiful and inspiring locations. 79,013 were here. [20] The church at Wells, no longer a cathedral, had a college of secular clergy. Though possibly influenced by carvings of acanthus leaves or vine leaves, it cannot be easily identified with any particular plant. See all 4 Wells Cathedral tours on Tripadvisor. The stiff leaf foliage of the capitals is renowned. Under Dean Goodenough, the monuments were moved to the cloisters and the remaining medieval paint and whitewash removed in an operation known as "the great scrape". The criss-crossed supports are properly called strainer arches but are popularly known as scissor arches for the very simple reason that they resemble an open pair of rather elegantly curved scissors. See all. Between 1315 and 1322 the central tower was heightened and topped by a spire, which caused the piers that supported it to show signs of stress. [135], On the outer wall of the transept, opposite Vicars' Hall, is a second clock face of the same clock, placed there just over seventy years after the interior clock and driven by the same mechanism. Currently there are 18 boy choristers and a similar number of girl choristers, aged from eight to fourteen. [161], Adjacent to the cathedral is a large lawned area, Cathedral Green, with three ancient gateways: Brown's Gatehouse, Penniless Porch and Chain Gate. [111] It is flanked by two windows each side in the clerestory, with large figures of saints, also dated to 1340–45. The English painter J. M. W. Turner visited Wells in 1795, making sketches of the precinct and a water colour of the west front, now in the Tate gallery. chapter house (Architecture) - [32] The design maintains the general proportions, and continues the strong projection of the buttresses. [67] The current bishop of Bath and Wells is Peter Hancock, who was installed in a service in the Cathedral on 7 June 2014. The Wells Cathedral School Symphony Orchestra of eighty players, has its main rehearsals from 3.00-6.00pm. [149] It now sings for about 50 services a year, when the Cathedral Choir is in recess or on tour, and spends one week a year singing as the "choir in residence" at another cathedral. Local fighting damaged the cathedral's stonework, furniture and windows. [4], Above the basement rise two storeys, ornamented with quatrefoils and niches originally holding about four hundred statues, with three hundred surviving until the mid-20th century. Get up to 35% off. [173] The interior of the cathedral was used for a Doctor Who episode, 'The Lazarus Experiment', while the exterior shots were filmed at Southwark Cathedral. Wells baronets, a member of the Order of Baronets with the surname Wells; Bishop of Bath and Wells; Other uses. The Palace is regularly open to visitors, but even when it isn't you can usually stroll around the moat and watch the swans swimming as they have done for centuries. [75] It is also a venue for musical events such as an annual concert by the Somerset Chamber Choir. [66], The panels in the chapel of St Katherine are attributed to Arnold of Nijmegen and date from about 1520. The third stages of the flanking towers were both built in the Perpendicular style of the late 14th century, to the design of William Wynford; that on the north-west was not begun until about 1425. The current building was erected between the 12th and 15th centuries and a Bishop Reginald de Bohun brought the idea of a revolutionary architectural style from France. [38][39], John Harewell raised money for the completion of the west front by William Wynford, who was appointed as master mason in 1365. [44][45] While Wells survived the Dissolution of the Monasteries better than the cathedrals of monastic foundation, the abolition of chantries in 1547 resulted in a reduction in its income. In the chapter house, the carvings of the 51 stalls include numerous small heads of great variety, many of them smiling or laughing. and some are engagingly humorous, with comical expressions. Inspired designs on t-shirts, posters, stickers, home decor, and more by independent artists and designers from around the world. [1][117] The east window was restored to a semblance of its original appearance by Thomas Willement in 1845. Two of these are placed as to complete the octagonal shape of the Lady Chapel, a solution described by Francis Bond as "an intuition of Genius". bed and breakfasts near Wells Cathedral. [113] The bracing arches are known as "St Andrew's Cross arches", in a reference to the patron saint of the cathedral. [119] The combination of yellow and green glass and the application of the bright yellow stain gives the window its popular name, the "Golden Window". [36] Ralph of Shrewsbury followed, continuing the eastward extension of the choir and retrochoir beyond. The misericords survived better than the other sections of the stalls, which during the Protestant Reformation had their canopies chopped off and galleries inserted above them. [131], In the north transept is Wells Cathedral clock, an astronomical clock from about 1325 believed to be by Peter Lightfoot, a monk of Glastonbury. The surviving mechanism, dated to between 1386 and 1392, was replaced in the 19th century, and was eventually moved to the Science Museum in London, where it continues to operate.