December 2023 – Before planning your visit, please check our ‘Visitor Notices’ for accessibility updates and one-off changes to opening times. Click here to view.




  • Saturdays and Sundays
  • Mondays to Fridays
  • Café 16
    Mon-Sat 10am-4pm

Opening times

  • Saturdays and Sundays
  • Mondays to Fridays
  • Café 16
    Mon-Sat 10am-4pm

Bell ringing

Newcastle Cathedral has a long tradition of bell-ringing, going back hundreds of years. The iconic Lantern Tower had bells in it as early as the fifteenth century.

The oldest bell was cast between 1385 and 1418 and is called Michael. It is the bell rung out for all occasions of national mourning or rejoicing. The Lantern Tower, with its incredible and intricate design, was the tallest landmark in the town for centuries and was designed to be a beacon for ships coming up the Tyne. 

By the middle of the eighteenth century, the renowned local historian Henry Bourne said the bells “have a bold and noble sound, and yet an exceedingly sweet and harmonious one.” There are 14 full circle ringing bells, plus the ‘Major’, which is a swing chiming bell weighing nearly 6 tonnes!

Today, the bells at Newcastle are rung by the Newcastle Guild, members of the Durham and Newcastle Diocesan Association of Change Ringers. They are all volunteers and range in age from 20s to 93 – the 100+ steps to the bell ringing chamber keeps them fit. Newcastle Cathedral’s bells are some of the finest in the country and we have hosted many bell ringing groups from all over the country.

Bell ringing occurs every Sunday throughout the year at the following times:

9-10am for Morning Eucharist

There is also occasional ringing for Choral Evensong on Saturdays and Sundays

Occasionally these times are subject to change, depending on the liturgical calendar and, for example, whether any special events or wedding bookings request bell ringing. Newcastle Cathedral will always endeavour to publish any changes as soon as possible.

Additionally, bell ringing practice occurs every Tuesday evening throughout the year from 7:30-9pm. On the third Tuesday of the month, the practice is from 7-9pm. There is no bell ringing practice in Holy Week.

2023 Cathedral special ringing

Please note that, due to unforeseen factors, bell ringing may not always occur on these planned dates.

DateTimeReason for ringing
Friday 13 January6:30pm – 7:45pmQuarter Peal Weekend
Saturday 14 January2:45pm – 4pm
5pm – 6:45pm
Quarter Peal Weekend
Sunday 15 January8:45am – 10amQuarter Peal Weekend
Saturday 11 February11am – 3pmPeal for Newcastle Guild Annual Dinner
Monday 13 March10:30am – 12pmQuarter Peal for Commonwealth Day
Sunday 23 April2:45pm – 4pmQuarter Peal for St George’s Day
Saturday 6 May12pm – 4pmPeal for The Coronation of His Majesty The King
Saturday 10 June12pm – 4pmPeal by ringers from Peterborough Cathedral
Friday 8 September10:30am – 12pmQuarter Peal for the Accession of His Majesty The King
Saturday 16 September12pm – 4pmPeal by The Ancient Society of College Youths
Tuesday 14 November10:30am – 12pmQuarter Peal for His Majesty The King’s Birthday
Saturday 18 November12pm – 4pmPeal by The Society of Royal Cumberland Youths
Wednesday 6 December10:30am – 12pmPeal for the Feast Day of St Nicholas
Saturday 9 December12pm – 4pmPeal for the Patronal Festival of St Nicholas

All weekday ringing will start at 10:30am unless there is a special service, in which case ringing will most likely take place an hour before the service.