Visiting, Tours and Talks

Why not visit our beautiful 930-year-old Norman Priory Church!

  • Look around on your own or with a few friends and a guidebook – St. Mary’s Priory is a beautiful church – “Victorian flesh on Norman Bones” as the Rev Ganz once said

  • Or come with your own guide – but does your guide know as much about the Priory Church as we do?
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  • Or have a History Tour/Talk by a Priory Guide – why did the Earl of Derby attack his own Priory, what was the original shape of the Priory, who put the stained glass windows in, what happened to the top of the Church, why did the floor go up and down again and why is our Priory better than Chichester Cathedral?

  • Or we can come to you and tell you about the 930 years of history of this beautiful Priory Church!

All fees mentioned below will go towards the £29,000 Lighting Project fund.

We look forward to meeting you!

Please check both tables below for when you want to come and what type of visit you want to make.

TimeEntrance
Saturday 10am-12pmFree, but donations are welcome.
The Priory Pantry will be open for drinks and (home-made) cake!
Tuesday 2pm-4pmOpen Church. Entrance free but donations welcome.
Thursday 9:30am-12pmPriory Crafters. Entrance free but donations welcome.
Wednesday and Sunday morningsEntrance for Church Services only.
Other timesOn request only.
Please book at least two weeks in advance to ensure availability and that your visit does not clash with other Church activity.
There is a £10 opening-up fee

Type of VisitCost and Details
Individuals and small groups looking roundNo additional cost but donations are welcome
Visitors bringing their own Guide£10 or £1 per person, whichever is the greater, plus any Opening-Up fee
Short History Tour/Talk (~20 minutes) by a Priory Guide£20 or £2 per person, whichever is the greater plus any “opening-up” charge
Please book at least two weeks in advance to ensure that there is a Priory Guide available and that your visit does not clash with other Church activity
Full History Tour/Talk (~1 hour) by a Priory Guide£30 or £3 per person, whichever is the greater plus any “opening-up” charge.
Please book at least two months in advance to ensure there is a Guide available and that your visit does not clash with other Church activities

Our Priory Guides can also come to your location and give a presentation on the History of St. Mary’s Priory Church.  A suggested donation of about £40 for large groups, up to £20 for small groups.  Please book at least two months in advance to ensure there is a Guide available.

Details

How to Book: Please contact the Verger for a Church Tour/talk or if Opening-Up is requested.  For a talk at your location, please contact a Priory Guide

Facilities: As well as refreshments in the Priory Pantry on Saturday mornings, toilets (including for those with disabilities) are available

How Many: Please let us know how many people are coming and whether anyone will need ramps for a wheelchair

Contact Details: Please supply us with an email address and a phone number so that we can contact you incase there are unexpected changes

Parking: Please see Visiting about parking arrangements as there is no parking at St. Mary’s except for drivers with walking difficulties

Note: Please see Renewal of Old Buildings

Note: the Priory Guides are local volunteers and not experts in church architecture – we welcome anyone who can tell us more about the building we love!