In the heart of God,
in the heart of the countryside

Welcome to the website for the Bishops Lydeard Benefice

After a consultation between clergy and churchwardens in the Benefice, it has been decided that due to the increase in the Covid 19 infection rate which has resulted in the imposition of a nationwide ‘lockdown’, no collective worship will take place until further notice. The decision to withdraw communal worship in the Benefice has not been taken lightly, and is in the interests of maintaining the safety of all.

NEW ON ZOOM! We are offering Morning Prayer from Monday to Saturday during Lent and a special meeting – “A Word for Lent” on Monday afternoons. More information here.

NEW! We are now live streaming services (without a congregation) every Sunday. Click here for more information. The service for Sunday 28th February starts at 10.30am and you can join us here at that time, or view a recording later.

The weekly ‘InTouch’ newsletter is also being produced and circulated. If you wish to receive the newsletter and links to the services on our YouTube site, please email Our YouTube site can be found here.

Churches in the Benefice will be open for private prayer as follows:

The Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Bishops Lydeard
Sundays: 09.00 to 10.00 (please note that there may be some setting up going on for live streaming of the service. We greatly regret that due to COVID 19 restrictions attendance at the service is limited to those who need to be there to carry out a specific role.) Wednesdays: 09.30 to 11.30am.

The Church of St. Thomas of Canterbury, Cothelstone
Open during daylight hours
The Church of St. Lawrence, Martyr, Lydeard St. Lawrence
Sundays and Thursdays 11am to 12pm
The Church of St. Pancras, West Bagborough
Open during daylight hours
The Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, Combe Florey
Open on Sundays from 10am to 3pm

The benefice consists of the parishes of Bishops Lydeard, West Bagborough, Cothelstone, Lydeard St Lawrence and Combe Florey. It is situated in one of the most beautiful parts of Somerset at the heart of an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, tucked under the south-western edge of the Quantock Hills. The Exmoor National Park is a few miles to the west and the north Somerset coast has its own rugged beauty. The area is a favourite with holiday-makers whether they are sun-seekers, fossil hunters or walkers, and the terminus of the West Somerset Railway at Bishops Lydeard is a mecca for railway enthusiasts.

In normal circumstances all the churches in our benefice are open during daylight hours but due to the Covid 19 pandemic access is currently restricted. As the situation improves we hope to restore full access, at which time we warmly invite you drop in to be nurtured by the peace and holiness of these beautiful places of worship.

Aerial photograph of Combe Florey used by kind permission of Robin Cleverley