Wells Cathedral

Vicars' Close: A medieval street singing through the centuries

With support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Wells Cathedral is bringing new and exciting opportunities to Vicars Close and conserving its internationally significant medieval heritage. To make this happen we need to raise £1.8 million.
raised of £1,800,000 target
by 8 supporters
RCN n/a


Vicars Close was built over 650 years ago to house the Vicars Choral and it continues to be inhabited by their successors today. Vicars Close is unique, physically connected to Wells Cathedral and the most complete example of a medieval Close in the UK. It embodies an internationally renowned musical heritage.

A survey in 2013 showed the pressing need for conservation to every building in the Close and that the current condition of the buildings put them and the heritage they represent at risk of being lost.

We are therefore embarking on a major project which will:

Sensitively conserve the buildings of the close to help protect them for the next 650 years. We will work towards improving the energy efficiency of these historic buildings as part of our Cathedral wide commitment to net Zero by 2030

Work in partnership with our local community to develop a programme of activities which explore and celebrate the heritage of this unique place

Open up key historic spaces to the public for the first time, including the Chapel, Treasury and Vicars Hall. We will also offer new ways for everyone to explore the spaces which are physically challenging to access due to their historic design

Develop new spaces within a two of the houses for visitors to discover more about the history of the Close and the stories it has to tell

Create new opportunities for volunteering, work placements, apprenticeships and skills development, particularly for young people

Embrace opportunities to use our public green spaces, to explore medieval physic garden design, and work with local environmental partners to improve our biodiversity

The project will take six years to complete and cost in the region of £6million to deliver. We have secured £0.5million of funding and are working to secure a grant of £3.8million from the National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF), leaving £1.8million in match funding required by March 2024.

Can you help? .

About the charity

Wells Cathedral

Verified by JustGiving

RCN n/a
Described as the "most poetic of English Cathedrals", for centuries Wells has inspired worship, music, learning and curiosity - at the heart of its community, a sacred space and common ground, enriching lives now and in the future. Wells Cathedral is grateful for public support - thank you.

Donation summary

Total raised
+ £42.50 Gift Aid
Online donations
Offline donations
Direct donations
Donations via fundraisers

* Charities pay a small fee for our service. Find out how much it is and what we do for it.