image for Historic Site item typeBrecon Cathedral

Brecon Cathedral

Brecon Cathedral

Historic Site



01874 623857


Cathedral Close,


Brecon Cathedral is set within the only walled cathedral close in Wales and is regarded as one of the country’s finest buildings. Inside the Cathedral is a rare and beautiful Celtic font. The Havard Chapel is home to the original colours from the Zulu wars – including Rorke’s Drift.

Founded as a Benedictine priory, it became the parish church of Brecon in 1537, a role it held until in 1923 it became the Cathedral for the newly created Diocese of Swansea and Brecon.

It sites on top of a ridge a few hundred yards from the castle which had been established by Bernard Newmarch in 1093 upon the Norman conquest of Wales. He give the church to the Benedictine monks of Battle in Sussex who established the priory here. The first church was therefore probably 12th century although much of the existing church was rebuilt in later medieval times. During the 15th century a three or four story screen, the 'golden rood' of Brecon was erected and guild chapels appeared in the aisles. All now removed, but traces remain. During its period as a parish church it was restored in 1861-2 and in 1827 under Sir George Gilbert Scott, the chancel vaulting and other roof work are his design. The North transept is also the chapel for the South Wales Borders with their flags and regimental honors on display there. All this has led to a lot of historic details well worth while exploring. If you want help there are church visitors on duty to answer your questions and special tours can be arranged for school parties and other groups if you contact the Cathedral in advance.

Alongside the Cathedral are Pilgrims Tea Rooms while the ancient Tithe Barn is now a fine Heritage Centre with not only a gift shop but also a very good display on the Cathedral.

There are usually services every Sunday at 08:00, 11:00 and 15:30 as well as a number of special services. Brecon has a fine Cathedral choir which takes part in some of them.

Coach parties acceptedDisabled toiletsGift shopOn-site cateringOn-site light refreshmentsPublic toiletsAccepts groups

Opening Details

Open all the time

Usual opening hours for visiting 8.30am to 6pm daily.

Sundays services are as follows:
• 8.00 a.m. Eucharist
• 11.00 a.m. The Cathedral Eucharist (3rd Sunday Matins)
• 3.30 p.m. Choral Evensong



Plan route to Brecon Cathedral using Google mapsPlan route using Google maps

Map reference: SO 043289  Lat: 51.95033 Long: -3.39386

The town of Brecon is bisected by the main A470 and A40 roads, which cross the national park. The cathedral is located in the north of the town on the B4520 which is well signposted.
The town has no train station, however there are local bus services in the area. The nearest train station is either Abergavenny or Llandovery.

Parking: free

Accessible by Public Transport: 20 miles from Abergavenny station


  • Coach parties acceptedCoach parties accepted
  • Disabled toiletsDisabled toilets
  • Gift shopGift shop
  • On-site cateringOn-site catering
  • On-site light refreshmentsOn-site light refreshments
  • Public toiletsPublic toilets
  • Accepts groupsAccepts groups
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