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Westminster Abbey is a living church at the heart of the nation's story where more than 1000 years of British history and pilgrimage can be explored under one roof. A warm welcome awaits all in this sacred space.

Our Abbey Highlights Tour includes:

  • Coronation Chair
  • Cosmati Pavement - site of coronations
  • Royal tombs
  • Grave of the Unknown Warrior
  • Poets’ Corner

This tour can be tailored to suit your study topic.

Suitable for: KS3, KS4 and Post-16

Tour duration: 1.5 hours

Cost: £4

A group of secondary school students view the Grave of the Unknown Warrior

Duration of tours: 1.5 hours | Cost: £4, except where stated


Christian Life and Worship

Explore how symbols help Christians to worship in the Abbey and live the Christian life. This tour looks at how symbolic objects, actions, words and images are used in baptism, marriage and funerals.

Suitable for: KS3, KS4 and Post-16


Pilgrimage

Why have people come to the Abbey as pilgrims for nearly a thousand years? Find out about the Shrine of St Edward, and consider what pilgrimage means to Christians and offers to all.

Suitable for: KS3 and KS4


Abbey and Parliament

See where Parliament met in medieval times and explore the historical and contemporary links between the Abbey and the Houses of Parliament.

Suitable for: KS3, KS4 and Post-16


Religion and Science

Some of the greatest, and most controversial, scientists are buried or remembered at Westminster Abbey. This tour explores the relationship between science and religion in the past and today.

Suitable for: KS3, KS4 and Post-16


Religion in Public Life

Consider what Britain as a 'Christian country' means in the Coronation Church, where Benedictine values of hospitality, mutual respect and tolerance continue to contribute to contemporary society. Additional 'Meet a Priest' workshop recommended.

Suitable for: KS4 and Post-16


Meet a Priest

Put your questions on Christian teaching and moral, ethical and social issues to a member of the clergy. Can be combined with any RE tour of the Abbey.

Suitable for: KS3, KS4 & Post-16

Tour and Workshop duration: 2 hours

Cost: £5 per student


A group of secondary school students sat in front of the Shrine of St Edward the Confessor

Duration of tours: 1.5 hours | Cost: £4


Gothic Abbey

Explore the differences between Medieval Gothic and Victorian Gothic on this architectural and literary tour.

Suitable for: KS3, KS4 & Post-16


Shakespeare

Faith, power and death: explore the cultural context of Shakespeare’s plays in Westminster Abbey and visit the graves and memorials of Tudor and Jacobean playwrights.

Suitable for: KS3, KS4 & Post-16


Art in the Abbey

Explore 1,000 of art from the medieval wall paintings to the brand new Queen's Window designed by David Hockney. Includes opportunities for sketching.

Suitable for: KS3, KS4 & Post-16


A group of secondary school students listen to a guide during a tour of Westminster Abbey

Duration of tours: 1.5 hours | Cost: £4


Dissolution: Before and After*

600 years of monastic life ended here in 1540. Investigate the pre-Reformation church exploring themes such as church fabric and wealth and religious doctrine. Discover the story of how one of the most powerful monasteries in the land was dissolved.

Suitable for: KS4 & Post-16


Henry VII: Building a Legacy

Find out how Henry VII established and consolidated his dynasty with this detailed look at the Lady Chapel and the Shrine of St Edward. Tour includes rare access to Henry's tomb.

Suitable for: KS4 and Post-16


Enquiring into Elizabeth*

Discover what sovereignty meant to Elizabeth I as you stand at the Coronation site and find out how her religious settlement affected Westminster Abbey.

Suitable for: KS4 and Post-16


* These sessions can be booked as part of a joint offer with The National Archives at Kew.


Secondary school students looking at an Icon painting of Christ in Westminster Abbey

A-Level Masterclass with Dr John Guy

Wednesday 22nd January 2020, 10.00am-2.30pm 

Join us for our annual History Masterclass, a great opportunity for A-Level Historians to explore historic Westminster Abbey and its precincts, and enjoy a lecture from renowned Historian Dr John Guy (Clare College, Cambridge). Find out more

Suitable for: Post-16

Cost: £5 per student 

Maximum number of students per school: 20 


Science and Religion Conference

Wednesday 12th February 2020, 10.00am-4.00pm

How should we tackle Big Questions – where both science and religion seem to have something to say? Discover new ways to think about the meaning of life and the challenge of AI through interactive activities and conversations with leading academics in science, theology and other disciplines. Find out more

Suitable for: KS4

Cost: £4 per student


A boy asks a question during a Q&A for school students aged 16+

Tour and Galleries visit duration: 2 hours | Cost: £5


Visit the stunning Galleries high above the east end of the Abbey and view some of the rare and unusual objects in the Abbey collection. A visit to the Gallery must be booked as an add-on tour.


The wax effigy of Nelson in the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Galleries

Self-led visits

Schools are welcome to come and explore the Abbey without a guide on self-led visits. We have trails available to download to support your visit. The trails cover a range of topics, including Church and State, Maths, Tudors, Christianity, Super Scientists and Charles Dickens.

Plan your self-led visit
A group of secondary school students with clipboards in Westminster Abbey

Video conferences

Book a video-conference session led by our education officers, and your students can talk to us live, on a topic of your choice. Video-conferences are free of charge and can be booked at a time to suit you. Please call us to discuss your requirements.

Pay us a virtual visit
A group of secondary school student participate in a Westminster Abbey video conference

Free visits for eligible schools

We encourage visits from all UK schools. However, we recognise that the cost of a visit can be a barrier.

Schools with 35% or more pupils eligible for free school meals may book a free guided tour of the Abbey. 

All maintained schools in the boroughs listed may bring one whole year 8 group for free for any guided tour this academic year.

Email us to find out more and book your visit: [email protected]

Eligible Boroughs:
Barking and Dagenham
Brent
Camden
Enfield
Greenwich
Hackney
Haringey
Islington
Lambeth
Lewisham
Newham
Southwark
Tower Hamlets
Waltham Forest
Westminster

Free visits subject to availability

School travel awards 2018/19

Westminster Abbey was nominated as one of the Best Venues for History Learning at the School
Travel Awards 2018/19. Organised by School Travel Organiser magazine, the awards recognise
those in the education sector who excel in providing exciting and educational trips for
Primary and Secondary schools.

School travel awards 2018/19 finalist

You are surrounded by history at the Abbey, not like a museum where it’s just displayed, but here you are standing where history has happened.

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Gerlinde - Abbey Marshal

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