Christmas at the Cathedral

Find out about all the events at St Albans Cathedral over Christmas, including the Christingle Service, St Albans Bach Choir Christmas Carols, Carols on the Hour, and timings of Christmas services.

There are special services and carol concerts at St Albans Cathedral throughout the Christmas season.

Concerts and services

Bach by Candlelight - Saturday 2nd December at 7.30pm
Join Mosaic for an evening of JS Bach’s most festive and uplifting music in the candlelit glory of St Albans Cathedral with Amadeus Chamber Orchestra.

Advent Procession - Sunday 3rd December at 6.30pm
Sung by the Cathedral Choir. A beautiful candlelit service of readings and music, marking the start of Advent.

Willow Foundation Carol Concert - Tuesday 5th December at 7.30pm
A wonderful evening of festivities. You’ll be treated to the spectacular voices of the Hertfordshire Chorus alongside the opportunity to sing some carols yourself.

St Albans Bach Choir Christmas Carols - Saturday 9th December at 3pm family concert* and 7pm evening concert
Two concerts of Christmas music and readings performed by the St Albans Bach Choir.
*3pm performance suitable for young children.

Christingle Service - Sunday 10th December at 3pm
Children and adults alike love this enjoyable service, which ends in candlelight.

Organ Meditation - Sunday 10th December at 5.15pm
Tom Winpenny, Assistant Master of the Music, plays the famous Christmas cycle La Nativité du Seigneur by Olivier Messiaen.

Carols on the Hour - Saturday 16th December (various times - see below)

The Hospice of St Francis Christmas Carol Concert - Sunday 17th December at 3pm
A festive afternoon of popular carols and Christmas readings in aid of The Hospice of St Francis.

Festival of Lessons and Carols - Thursday 21st and Friday 22nd December at 7pm
Sung by the Cathedral Choir. Admission is by ticket only, available by public ballot. For more details of how to apply please go to or call 01727 890210.

Christmas Eve
- Combined Eucharist at 10am
- Crib Service at 2.30pm (suitable for young children)
- Choral Evensong for Christmas at 5.30pm
- Midnight Mass at 11.30pm

Christmas Day
- Eucharist with carols at 8am
- Parish Eucharist for Christmas Day at 9.30am (for all ages with crèche and children's activities)
- Matins for Christmas Day at 11.15am
- Eucharist at 12.30 pm
Following the 12.30 service the cathedral is closed for the rest of Christmas Day.

Boxing Day
- Eucharist at 9am and 12noon
- Carols on Boxing Day at 4pm

New Year’s Day Celebration Concert - Monday 1st January at 7pm

Carols on the Hour

Saturday 16th December

Take a break from the Christmas shopping and enjoy a very special Cathedral event! Each carol service lasts just 30 minutes - enough time to sing some uplifting carols with the Cathedral choirs and local visiting choirs to get a real taste of Christmas in this beautiful, atmospheric Cathedral.

On the hour, every hour from 11am to 4pm. No tickets required.

Guided tours of the Cathedral

Christmas Tower Tours
Enjoy the best views in town! This spectacular tour takes you all the way to the top of the Norman Bell Tower via the North Transept gallery, the ringing and bell chamber before your final climb out onto the roof of the tower, weather permitting. Restrictions apply - see the Cathedral website for details.

Saturday 25th November at 11.30am, 1pm, 2.30pm
Wednesday 29th November 11am, 12.30pm
Saturday 2nd December 11.30am , 1pm, 2.30pm
Wednesday 6th December 11am, 12.30pm

Price: £9. Find out more about the tours and how to book on the St Albans Cathedral website.  

FREE Guided Tours of the Cathedral are available daily at the following times:
11.30am Monday to Saturday
2pm Saturday
2.30pm Sunday to Friday

If your time is limited, there is a Cathedral Highlights Tour at 1.05pm every day of the week.

Further information

See the What's On section of the Cathedral's website for details and booking information for all the Christmas services and events.