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Advent and Christmas 2018


Christmas is a wonderful time of year with plenty happening at Bath Abbey to mark this very special season. From carol-singing to spectacular choral concerts, why not drop by to see what’s going on? There is no better way to get into a festive mood than enjoying Christmas carols in the Abbey’s beautiful surroundings.

The Abbey’s Footprint project means a reduced seating capacity. Where possible extra services and ticketing are provided to save disappointment. Thank you for your patience.


The large number of special events and services taking place in November and December means that the Abbey will be closed to visitors at certain times. For details of opening hours please visit our website or contact the Abbey Office on 01225 422462.


A wide selection of Christmas cards, candles, tree decorations, nativity sets, CDs, books and gifts are available. Open Mon-Sat 10am-7pm during the Bath Christmas market (22 Nov-8 Dec). Usual winter opening hours: Mon-Sat 10am-4.30pm.


Climb 212 steps for stunning views and discover the Abbey’s bells, ringing chamber and clock. Tours run regularly during the Bath Christmas market (22 Nov-8 Dec) Mon-Sat, first tour of the day 11am. Tickets: Adult £8, Child (5-15 yrs) £4. Includes free mulled wine or hot chocolate.


Saturday 8 Dec 1pm, 2pm, 3pm, 4pm and 5pm
A popular, informal 20-minute service with traditional carols. Ideal for weary shoppers. All welcome, no reserved seating or tickets required.


Handel’s Messiah
Friday 7 Dec and Saturday 8 Dec 7.30pm
Bath Choral Society’s annual and ever-popular performance of Handel’s Messiah with the Bristol Ensemble, conducted by David Gostick.
Tickets £6-26 available from the Bath Box Office.

A Christmas Celebration
Saturday 15 Dec 7pm
Featuring the Abbey’s Girls’, Boys’ and Men’s Choirs.
Tickets £12-18 available from the Bath Box Office.

La Nativité - Messiaen
Sunday 16 Dec 6.30pm
A Christmas meditation with organist Huw Williams and scripture readings. All welcome, no reserved seating or tickets required.


Family Carol Services
Sunday 16 Dec 3pm and 4.15pm
Children are invited to come dressed as a shepherd, angel, wise man or citizen of Bethlehem to create a festive Christmas tableau. Features a real donkey.
All welcome, no reserved seating so please arrive early to avoid disappointment.

Nine Lessons and Carols with Abbey Boys’ and Men’s Choirs
Sunday 23 Dec 4.30pm and 7pm
All are welcome to join us for this beautiful service based around nine Bible readings interspersed with Christmas hymns and carols sung by the Abbey Choirs of Boys and Men. Entry is by (free) ticket only. 
We are sorry but all tickets have already been allocated. There will be a very small number of tickets available at the door just prior to the services but please note long queues are expected.

Service of Healing and Hope
Sunday 23 December, 4pm at St Michael’s Without (opposite Waitrose)

A quiet reflective service for those who are hurting this Christmas.


Carol Praise 4pm and 6pm
An informal service with traditional carols. All welcome, no reserved seating or tickets required but we expect the Abbey to be full to capacity.

Midnight Communion 11pm
at Bath Abbey and at St Michael’s Without (opposite Waitrose)

Be there at the very start of Christmas. A celebration of Christ’s birth, and with him the birth of new hope for the world. All welcome. Limited seating at both venues.


Holy Communion 8am
Join us at this quiet hour as we draw together before the Christ-child. A said service of Holy Communion, using traditional language.

Family Communion 9.30am
Celebrate ‘God with us’ at this informal service, suitable for all ages. Music led by the Abbey Boys’ Choir.

Sung Eucharist for Christmas 11.15am
Celebrate with us, using the traditional Christmas music and liturgy, with Abbey Choirs.