Events at Dorchester Abbey

For generations people have brought their gifts and skills to enhance the life of Dorchester Abbey and this tradition continues as a huge variety of groups and organisations hire and use the Abbey each year as the venue for a wide and vibrant programme of concerts, theatre, visual arts and other events.

If you would like to hire the Abbey for your event then take a look at our information for hirers.

NARNIA returns to Dorchester Abbey
Jan 11 – Mar 8 all-day
NARNIA returns to Dorchester Abbey @ Dorchester Abbey

Back by popular demand, Narnia returns to Dorchester Abbey!
An interactive exhibition for families, schools and people of all ages to explore the imaginative world of Narnia.
– Saturdays & Half Term 10am-5pm (last entry 4.30pm)
– Sundays 1-5pm (last entry 4.30pm)

A pop up tea room will be running 1.30-3.30pm on Saturdays and through half term.
Please check our website if you are travelling some distance to the exhibition as it may be closed occasionally for other events.
The exhibition will close at 4pm on Saturdays 8th, 29th Feb and 7th March for rehearsals for evening Abbey events
Some school slots are available. Contact Margaret Craig at to organise a group visit.

Corona Strings ‘Heartstrings’ a feast of romantic works
Feb 29 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Corona Strings 'Heartstrings' a feast of romantic works @ Dorchester Abbey

Another Corona Strings special – a concert of romantic music for Valentines! Top of the bill is Tchaikovsky’s magnificent Serenade for Strings along with stunning works by Nordic composers Sibelius and Nielsen. Also featured in this concert is the delightful concerto for Guitar and Strings by Vincent Lindsey-Clark for which the orchestra is joined by the stunning guitarist, Raymond Burley.

Tchaikovsky, Serenade in C

Sibelius, Romance

Lindsey-Clark, Guitar Concerto

Nielsen, Little Suite Op.1

Finzi, Romance

Corona Strings

Leader, Catherine Leech

Guitar, Raymond Burley

Janet Lincé, Conductor

Thames Consort
Mar 7 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Thames Consort @ dorchester Abbey

Thames Consort, led by director Jeremy Boughton, bring a varied programme of vocal and instrumental music to raise money for Dorchester Abbey
Sharon Warnes & Claire Parkin (Violins)
Judith Dallosso (‘Cello)
Glynne Stackhouse (continuo organ)

Benson Choral Society – Vaughan Williams’ Sea Symphony
Mar 14 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Benson Choral Society - Vaughan Williams' Sea Symphony @ Dorchester Abbey

The centrepiece of BCS’s Spring concert in March will be Vaughan Williams’ epic Sea Symphony plus Greigs Piano Concerto.

Berkshire Maestros – Gloria: BYC, Alumni and Camerata Concert
Mar 21 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Berkshire Maestros - Gloria: BYC, Alumni and Camerata Concert @ Dorchester Abbey

Berkshire Maestros senior choir Berkshire Youth Choir and their alumni members will be in concert with Berkshire Maestros chamber orchestra Camerata The concert will culminate in a performance of Vivaldi’s Gloria.

Tickets will go on sale in mid-February.

OSJ Good Friday Brahms German Requiem
Apr 10 @ 6:00 am – 7:30 am

Brahms German Requiem
Faure La Mort de Melisande
Berlioz La Mort d’Ophelie
Sibelius The Death of Melisande

OSJ Brahms German Requiem
Apr 10 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
OSJ Brahms German Requiem @ Dorchester Abbey

Brahms Requiem
Faure La Mort de Melisande
Berlioz La Mort d’Ophelie
Sibelius The Death of Melisande

OSJ Voices
Orchestra of St John’s
Conductor John Lubbock

English Music Festival
May 22 – May 25 all-day
English Music Festival @ Dorchester Abbey | Dorchester | England | United Kingdom

The fourteenth Festival of English Music will take place in Oxfordshire from Friday 22nd to Monday 25th May 2020. The annual English Music Festival celebrates the brilliance, innovation, beauty and rich musical heritage of Britain with a strong focus on unearthing overlooked or forgotten masterpieces of the late nineteenth to mid-twentieth century.

Launching the Festival at Dorchester Abbey, Oxfordshire will be the BBC Concert Orchestra, under conductor Gavin Sutherland, to perform a first modern performance of Frederic Cowen’s Symphony no.4, known as ‘The Welsh’, together with a World Première overture by Elgar, and a rare performance of Samuel Coleridge-Taylor’s Violin Concerto, performed by soloist, Rupert Marshall-Luck.

A full programme is available on the website,

Rossini’s – Petite Messe Solennelle
Jun 6 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Rossini's - Petite Messe Solennelle @ Dorchester Abbey

The centrepiece of BCS’s Summer Concert will be Rossini’s lively classic Petite Messe Solennelle

Nape – Festival of Voices
Jun 15 @ 6:30 pm – Jun 19 @ 8:00 pm
Nape - Festival of Voices @ Dorchester Abbey | Dorchester | England | United Kingdom

A massed choir of 250 children from 10 different Oxfordshire Primary Schools each evening, accompanied by a youth band and with young guest players. Tickets ordered via participants’ schools or send an SAE to Sue Baker at 4 Silver Birches, Stanton St John, OX331HH.