Space for Silence A Space for Joy
St Bride's Church is an extraordinary space in which the beauty of its architecture, the power of the liturgy and a wealth of history all meet and enrich each other.
St Bride’s is open most days of the year, apart from Bank holidays. Our normal opening hours are listed below. If you are in any doubt please contact the office on 020 7427 0133, or firstname.lastname@example.org, who will be pleased to advise you.
The church is open to all during the following hours:-
Monday – Friday: 8:00am – 6:00pm
Saturday: 10:00am – 3:30pm
Sunday: 10:00am – 6:30pm
The church office is staffed Monday – Friday: 9:00am – 5:00pm.
How To Get Here
The church is served by numbers 11, 15, 26, 76 and 341 which stop on Fleet Street near the church.
Thameslink services run into the closest station, City Thameslink. Other operators run services to nearby Blackfriars.
The closest tube stations are St Paul’s (Central Line) and Blackfriars (District & Circle Lines).
We are open for visitors and worshippers, and our services and recitals have resumed. We are easing our COVID-19 restrictions but some measures remain in place for all our safety.
We have earned Visit England’s official “We’re good to go” accreditation to show that we are following public health and industry COVID-19 guidelines.
Everyone is welcome to visit St Bride’s but please do not do so if you have symptoms of COVID-19. Follow the guidance on the NHS website if you think you may be unwell.
We encourage you to use the NHS COVID-19 app to scan the QR code in church.
During your visit:
- Please be mindful of the need for caution particularly with regard to social distancing and respecting others’ wishes.
- We encourage you to wear a face mask whilst inside the church.
- Sanitiser is available as you enter the church to help keep your hands clean.
- Please ask the Verger on duty if you need help during your visit.
In addition, for those attending services:
- Seating at services remains socially distanced where possible for those not in the same group.
- Congregational singing is permitted but we request face masks continue to be worn.
St Bride’s warmly welcomes visitors from across the world and our doors stand open to all whether they are coming to take part in a service, searching for a moment of peace and calm amidst the bustle of the City, or wish to discover more of the history of one of the earliest Christian sites in the City of London.
The Guild of St Bride assists in the conduct of public worship and its members are distinguished by their russet gowns and will often be on hand to welcome you and answer questions.
Unusually amongst City churches, St Bride’s holds two choral services each Sunday which help underpin the spiritual life of the church. Both are services with traditional liturgy enhanced by music of the highest standards from our professional choir.
There is a Sunday Club at our 11am Sunday Choral Eucharist for younger members. Afterwards the congregation is encouraged to stay for refreshments. Choral Evensong takes place at 5:30pm and on the second and fourth Sundays of the month there is an extended musical offering in place of the sermon, which we call a Sermon in Music.
Every day the church is open for private prayer and on weekday mornings our day begins with a short said service of Morning Prayer in the Crypt at 8:15am. From the New Year, there is also a lunchtime Said Eucharist service on Wednesdays at 1:15pm in the Crypt.
Each weekday evening from 5 – 6pm we invite you to escape to the sanctuary of St Bride’s and find peace in our Space for Silence.
When you visit St Bride’s you are spoilt for choice for things to see but some of the highlights in the main church are:
- The trompe l’oeil behind the Altar. This was painted by Glyn Jones for the rededication of the church in 1957.
- The Journalists’ Altar – formerly The Hostage Altar. This can be found in the north east corner of the church. This side altar became the The Hostage Altar when John McCarthy was held in Beirut between 1986 and 1991. Vigils were held here and candles were lit constantly until he was released. We now call it The Journalists’ Altar and it serves as a memorial table to the many journalists and support staff who have who have died in the conflicts of the 21st Century while bringing us the news.
- A memorial to Polly Nichols, the first known victim of the Victorian serial killer nicknamed ‘Jack the Ripper’ is to be found inside the west door, beneath the tower. Polly Nichols was born and grew up in our parish, and was married here in 1864.
Downstairs in the crypt you should make sure that you see:
- The Roman tessellated pavement found behind the altar in the main crypt chapel. Dated circa AD 180, this is the earliest evidence of a building on the site.
- The Medieval Chapel in the north east corner. This chapel was discovered when the architects needed to investigate the foundations before the present church could be built. In 2002, this chapel was restored as a memorial to the Harmsworth family and the staff of Associated Newspapers who lost their lives in the First and Second World Wars.
- One particularly rare and unusual artefact that we have on display is a Victorian iron casket, dating from the days of of Burke and Hare – the ‘Body Snatchers’ – which promised ‘safety for the dead’ by deterring those who earned money by exhuming bodies.
Near to St Bride’s:
- Close at hand you will find a Blue Plaque noting the house where Samuel Pepys was born in Salisbury Court. Pepys was baptised at St Bride’s and his brother, Tom, was buried here.
- If you are thirsty pop into The Old Bell Tavern, the place where Sir Christopher Wren lodged his workmen during the building of the church.
- Venture a little further afield to discover Dr Johnson’s House. The vast expansion of the printing industry in Fleet Street in the middle of the 18th century drew interest from intellectuals, actors and artists and this is the charming house where Dr Johnson compiled his great Dictionary of the English Language.
The story of St Bride’s spans 2000 years of London history, and is endlessly fascinating.
Over the centuries our church has seen it all: plague, fire, religious transformation, and the whole history of the printed word – alongside times of great joy and celebration.
When tours resume they will be every Tuesday afternoon at 2:15 pm (except during December and August) we provide an extensive guided tour of our church, its crypt, and our charnel house which contains the bones of our mediaeval parishioners. Tours are led by one of our trained, volunteer tour guides.
Each tour lasts approximately 90 minutes. We ask for a donation of £6 per head. Booking is not required – just turn up in good time! Special tours for groups can also be arranged by telephoning the office on (+44) 20 7427 0133 or emailing email@example.com.
St Bride’s warmly welcomes disabled visitors and their companions. The main church is largely step free and very accessible, apart from the side aisles which are raised by three steps. We have moveable seating which makes it easy to accommodate wheelchair users.
If you are attending a service and require a wheelchair space or any other assistance, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office on 020 7427 0133 in advance to discuss how we can make sure your visit is stress free.
If you have any questions that are not answered by the information below, please contact us and we will endeavour to help you. During all services, there are volunteers on hand to offer support where required.
At Eucharistic services, if you are unable to come to the altar to receive Communion, please speak to one of the volunteers who will arrange to have it brought to you in your seat.
Most services are held in the main church which is at street level, but Weekday Morning Prayer and Midweek Eucharists are held in the crypt.
Mobility impaired visitors
Step free access to the main body of St Bride’s is via the west door entrance at the Salisbury Court end of St Bride’s Avenue. During some events, this door may be closed but there will be a sign on the door with a number to call for assistance.
We regret that there is no step free access to the crypt and there are 20 steps from the main body of the church down to the crypt, as well as uneven steps and flooring in the crypt itself.
Accessible toilets are available when services are taking place but are not available at other times to members of the public. You can find details of the City of London Community Toilet scheme here.
Visually impaired visitors
Large print orders of service are available for all regular church services. Please be aware that at some services, especially around Advent and Christmas, the lighting can be quite low.
Visitors with assistance dogs
St Bride’s welcomes guide dogs, hearing dogs and assistance dogs.
Visitors with hearing difficulties
St Bride’s is equipped with a hearing loop system that covers the main body of the building and is used at all services.
St Bride’s is unable to offer any dedicated parking but there are blue badge bays quite nearby in Dorset Rise and Tudor Street. Blue Badge parking rules do not fully apply in the City of London and you can find more information about that here.
Currently, it is possible for a vehicle to wait in Salisbury Court while dropping off a disabled passenger and accompanying them into the building if necessary. Please check here for up-to-date conditions.
St Bride’s uses the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0. These guidelines explain how to make web content more accessible for people with disabilities, and user-friendly for everyone.
The guidelines have three levels of accessibility (A, AA and AAA). We have chosen Level AA as the target for our website. We are working towards achieving that, but we realise there are some areas that still need improving. If you have any difficulties in using our website please email us at email@example.com.