No visit to Bath would be complete without at least a brief glimpse inside the beautiful Bath Abbey, dubbed ‘the lantern of the West’ for its masses of clear glazed windows, from which blazes forth a warm and inviting light as the evenings start to draw in.
The Abbey is open to visitors daily until 6pm. Admission is free of charge, though donations are encouraged and are used to fund a variety of aspects of the Abbey’s upkeep and ministry. If you’re feeling fit, you can climb 212 spiral steps and treat yourself to a unique view of the city of Bath by taking a tour of the tower. Tower tours operate every hour on the hour, from 10am to 4pm, and take around 45 minutes, in which time you will get to visit the bell-ringing chamber and see the bells themselves, and take a seat behind the great clock face to catch your breath.
With three resident choirs and links to others all over Europe, music is a crucial part of life at Bath Abbey, and visitors are always welcome to attend regular choral services. There is also a full and varied calendar of concerts and recitals featuring local and visiting choirs and musicians, the next of which is this Saturday 27th September, in which Bath Male Choir and Treorchy Male choir join forces under the leadership of local choirmaster Grenville Jones. Tickets are available from Bath Box Office.
Upcoming concerts will include the world première of The Cool Web : A Robert Graves Oratorio and The Edith Cavell Story on 30th October, a major event in the Abbey’s year-long program of events to mark the Centenary of the Commencement of the First World War. The Cool Web is an original work by local composer and librettist Jools Scott and Sue Curtis, using the wartime poems of Robert Graves; and the Edith Cavell Story tells the life of the heroic WWI nurse, adapted from Diana Souhami’s biography.