LincolnshireSCAMBLESBYStMartin(explorechurches.org)

Inspire me

Whatever your passion; art, wildlife, sculpture, family history, architecture, walking, rock climbing, searching out the most perfect cream tea or even just finding somewhere quiet to sit and read a book. These are all things you can do in church buildings around the UK. Here you will find themes to inspire and trails to follow.

14 churches

BillBryson

Bill Bryson

Everybody loves Bill Bryson. His best selling travel books extol the glories of our country. Here he chooses 14 of his favourite churches, including Durham Cathedral, The Italian Chapel in Orkney and London’s St Martin’s in the Fields.

13 churches

PembrokeshireBOSHERTONStGovanChapel(visitpembrokeshire)1

Smallest churches

We appreciate the little churches in life. Church buildings come in many varieties, from old to new, urban to rural, and big to small. Here is a beautiful selection of the smallest churches in Britain.

10 churches

GreaterLondonEUSTONFriendsHouse(church)2

Heavenly church cafes

The churches featured here are just a selection of some our favourite church cafes: we can assure you that there are many more excellent options for you to visit and many more excuses for cake, if you need one!

11 churches

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Deeds not words

The church did not always have an easy relationship with women's suffrage, and some churches actually became a target for radical suffragette action. Today, however, many are rightly proud of their links to the women who have made such a difference to our society.

9 churches

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RAF100

In 2018 the Royal Air Force celebrates its 100th birthday. Up and down the country there are many links between churches and former airfields. Churches often house poignant reminders of brave aircrew, worth seeking out for the stories that they tell.

12 churches

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Hadrian’s wall

The Tyne Valley is known for its fine concentration of early churches, many built with stones recycled from the wall, arguably the best surviving concentration north of the Alps!

11 churches

LancashireALTCARStMichaelAllAngels(church)2

Wooden churches

Most ancient churches started off as simple wooden structures, but were soon adapted. Now, wooden churches are, therefore, rare in the UK, whether they have survived for centuries or are relatively new.

11 churches

GreaterLondonTOWEROFLONDONStPeterVincula(cardenandgodfrey)1

London’s unseen chapels

London is teeming with chapels of all shapes and sizes, often out of view of the main tourist routes and, sadly, many people miss them. Here are some often unseen gems to explore.

11 churches

SirChristopherWren

Sir Christopher Wren

Sir Christopher Wren (1632-1723) was one of the most highly acclaimed English architects in history. He rebuilt 52 churches in the City of London after the Great Fire in 1666, including what is regarded as his masterpiece, St Paul's Cathedral, completed in 1710, and where he is buried.

8 churches

Tyne&WearJARROWStPaul(stringingbedes)1

Oldest churches

The building of churches, whether for monasteries or public use, was an early sign of the growing influence of Christianity. What is astounding is how many elements of these earliest buildings survive today. This list includes churches where ancient fabric dates from pre AD800, and all are still being used.

ExploreChurches is by the National Churches Trust for people who love church buildings