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The Cathedral, Magna Carta and Refectory will be closed for visiting all day on Thursday 21 and Friday 22 and the morning of Saturday 23 October. Click here for opening times.


Advent and Christmas at the Cathedral

Love was born at Christmas,Star and Angels gave the sign...Love shall be our token,

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Advent and Christmas at the Cathedral

Posted By : Marie Thomas Monday 23rd October 2017

Love was born at Christmas,
Star and Angels gave the sign...
Love shall be our token,
Love be yours and love be mine…
(Love Came Down at Christmas - Christina Rossetti)

As the year themed around Memory and Identity draws to an end, visitors can enjoy a traditional Christmas at Salisbury Cathedral. In the Cloisters A Token of Love, inspired by Christina Rossetti’s poem Love Came Down at Christmas, gives visitors an opportunity to remember loved ones at Christmastide. A special prayer tree will stand amongst the lights and decorations in the Cloisters from Saturday, 9 December, with special star-shaped message tags available onto which names can be written and then hung on the tree.

The Twilight Tower Tours that traditionally run alongside Salisbury’s Christmas market, take visitors up to the base of the Spire at dusk to view the Christmas lights from on high. This year tour dates have been extended beyond the festive season into the New Year. For dates and times, or to book, click here or call 01722 555156.

From Darkness to Light, the Cathedral’s spectacular Advent Procession, takes place on Friday 1 December and Saturday 2 December at 19.00 and Sunday 3 December at 17.00. An unforgettable experience combining exquisite music, candlelight, Bible readings and favourite Advent carols, this beautiful service is a wonderful start to a season of celebration.

On Saturday, 9 December the City of London Sinfonia returns to accompany the full Cathedral choir (boys, girls and men) and four distinguished soloists in a performance of Handel’s Messiah. Last year’s performance of this much loved choral work was a sell-out, so early booking is advised. Doors open at 19.00 for a 19.30 start – tickets online from here or via the Salisbury Playhouse on 01722 320333

Christmas is also a family time at the Cathedral, with plenty for youngsters to do and enjoy. Under-fives can watch the Christmas story unfold in the Cathedral’s very own puppet theatre on Friday 8 December at 09:45 or 11:00 and the children’s Christmas trail, Little Lost Angel, is available from Wednesday 20 December until 3 January 2018 (except during service times).


Christmas Creativity workshops during which children can design and craft their own decorations, cards or small gifts take place on Friday 22 and Saturday 23 December at 10:00 – 12:00 and 13:00 – 15:00. All materials are provided and storytelling takes place afterwards by the Nativity display at 12.00 and 15.00.

If you want to visit the Cathedral as a group (10 or more), there are two special Group Carol Concerts at 14.30 on 12 December and 14.00 on 13 December. Singing is led by the Cathedral choir and mulled wine and a mince pies are served afterwards in the Cloisters. For tickets contact our bookings team on or call 01722 555120.

Belmond British Pullman are also coming to Salisbury Cathedral this year. Travellers can step back into the golden age of railway travel, enjoying a relaxing journey in luxury carriages with world class cuisine. On arrival passengers attend an exclusive Carol Concert in the Cathedral’s Quire and a visit to medieval city’s Christmas market (open from Thursday 23 November to Friday 22 December). Details can be found here

Cathedral Christmas Services

      Friday 22 December/Saturday 23 December

19.00      Carols by Candlelight
                  Book a meal from our Christmas menu in the Refectory afterwards contact
                  Refectory  manager Kevin Oborne on

Sunday 24 December

10.30      Christmas Eve Eucharist

15.30      Star of Wonder, the Christmas Eve Family service
              The Christmas story told in a colourful procession of gigantic 6ft puppets
                  with a live donkey and children in costume

17.30      Festal Evensong

23.00      Midnight Mass (note the earlier start time)


Monday 25 December

10.30      Christmas Day Eucharist

15.00      Festal Evensong
               The perfect way to round off Christmas afternoon and celebrate the year to come


For full Christmas event and service listings click here


For any other enquiries or further information contact: Marie Thomas at Salisbury Cathedral 01722 555148