Home » Church, Tower. Gift Shop and Brass Rubbing

Church, Tower. Gift Shop and Brass Rubbing

Visiting Great St. Mary’s can be customised  to almost any need. Our Shop and Tower staff will gladly assist you in booking your visit.

  • By phone: 01223 462914
  • By e-mail: office@gsm.cam.ac.uk

Entry to Great St Mary’s itself is free and you can come and go as you please. If you wish to climb the tower after you come into the church then there is a charge, (see below).

Group visits:

We are able to accommodate groups of various sizes.  In order to ensure that your group has priority of access, we recommend that you book a reservation well in advance.  Although you can risk turning up with a group in the hope of getting access to the tower, generally, booking two months in advance of your intended visit is sufficient time to reserve space; longer in prime tourist season.

The discounted rate for a group of ten persons or more is £3.30 per person from 1 July 2016. The concessions allowed for senior citizens or students touring individually are not granted as extra for group visits, since these prices already reflect this concession.

We can accommodate any size of group; however, we will almost certainly split groups of 24+ into two, since there is an ‘insurance policy’ limit to the amount of people allowed to be on the tower at any given time. A group visit usually takes around 20-30 minutes per party of up to 24.

The Tower : 

  • The tower is open Monday – Saturday from 10am to 4.30pm  in winter and 5.30pm in summer  (last entry to the tower is 30 minutes before close)
  • On Sundays open from 12.45 pm to 4.30/5.30pm (last entry to the tower is 30 minutes before close).

Tickets may be purchased at the gift shop and come with an information leaflet available in a variety of languages. You can pay by cash, credit or debit card or cheque.

Self-Guided Tower Tour prices for parties of less than ten or individuals  from 1 July 2016 are:

  • Adult  £3.90
  • Child (under 16)  £2.50
  • Student and Senior Citizen   £3.40
  • Family (2 adults + up to 2 children under 16)  £11.00

Please call the number above to make group bookings to the tower


1. The tower is accessible only when weather does not constitute a hazard.  The judgment of tower safety is made solely by staff of the church and will be closed if potential risk is deemed to outweigh the hazard. We cannot accept responsibility should this inconvenience your visit (and it almost certainly will, since decisions like this are made as and when the need arises). If you have made a group booking and paid in advance then you will be offered either a refund or another booking slot as you choose. We accept no other responsibility.

2. The decision to climb the tower is yours and yours alone.  Please note that access to the tower is via a 123-step medieval turret staircase; therefore, persons with heart conditions or medical issues where the effort of climbing is considered hazardous should refrain from making the attempt. Great St Mary’s staff will offer no judgment in specific cases.

3. As a visitor to Great St Mary’s you are covered by our public liability insurance while you climb the tower.

4. We regret to say that there is no disabled access to the tower, since it is impossible to install the required facilities in a building of this nature.

Brass Rubbing

We have brass rubbing with 5 replicas to choose from including Sir Roger de Trumpington and St. George and the Dragon!   They are £3 each.  Come and create your own souvenir!  Join us weekdays and Saturdays  from 11 am – 4 pm.  We also have free family activities.


Both Michaelhouse and Great St. Mary’s are available for appropriate groups to use for events.  To make arrangements for facility use, please contact our Church Secretary during our morning business hours of 10.00 to 13.00:

If you are intending to use the facility for a multi-day event, additional advance notice is recommended.

With around 100,000 visitors to the church each year from every corner of the world, the Gift Shop is the ideal place to take away a memento of your visit. You can find is in the main body of the church next to the entrance to the tower. We accept cash sterling, cheque, and most debit and credit cards. Chip and pin is available for your security.

When you visit Great St Mary’s you will stand in a place visited by Richard III,  Elizabeth I, Cardinal Wolsey, Oliver Cromwell and countless others who have had their moment in history and moved on.  From the pulpit, Reformers like Martin Bucer spoke; he so compellingly that even in deadly repose he was considered enough of a threat that Queen Mary Tudor had his already dead body burned in the marketplace.  But he remains in Great St Mary’s and so do his works.

We hope you will feel a little of what has been witnessed here.  On this site, for a millenium, has stood a place of worship known by many names.  It was built, rebuilt, burned and built again, each time a little higher and a little closer to heaven.   We hope you will visit and take a moment out of your personal history to add to the rest…