About Saint Winefride:
We do not have a lot of historical information about Saint Winefred (also spelled Winefride in Welsh), so most of what we know is anecdotal.Here is the story as it has been passed down:
Winefride (Gwenfrewi) was the daughter of a local prince. Her uncle was Saint Beuno . One day, around the year 630, Caradoc, a chieftain from Hawarden attempted to seduce Winefride. She ran from him towards the church which had been built by her uncle. Caradoc pursued her and cut off her head. In the place where her head fell, a spring of water came up. St. Beuno came out from the church, took up her head and placed it back on her body. He then prayed and raised her to life. A white scar encircled her neck, witness to her martyrdom. Caradoc sank to the ground and was never seen again.
Winefride became a nun and, after her uncle’s departure from Holywell for the Monastery of Clynnog Fawr, joined a community at Gwtherin where she became the Abbess. She died there some 22 years later.
St. Winefried’s Well:
This town has been a site of pilgrimage since the late 7th Century. Among the famous pilgrims to visit was Richard I (Richard the Lionheart) in 1189; Henry V in 1416; Edward IV in 1461; Prince Charles in 2021; and a list of royalty from the U.K and elsewhere.
It is the only shrine in Britain that can show an unbroken history of pilgrimage to the present day.
Due to reports of cures from the well waters, it has been nicknamed the “Lourdes of Wales”. The well is adjacent to Saint James Church.
The shrine is open daily throughout the year, with the exception of Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
Traveling to Saint Winefried’s Well:
Tel: 01352 713054.
Click here for the official website of Saint Winefried’s Well.
In order to arrange a pilgrimage and celebrate a Mass or to arrange a group visit or for general information, contact:
The Custodian, St Winefride’s Well, Greenfield Street, Holywell, Flintshire, CH8 7PN.
Tel. 01352 713054
Bridgettine Sisters run the Guest House (now known St Winefride`s Guest House), with en suite accommodation for 31 visitors, provides Bed and Breakfast Accommodation or Full Board as required. Mother Aurora and the Sisters, welcome bookings for accommodation. Meals also available by arrangement for non residents.
St Winifride’s Guest House
20, New Road, Holywell
Flintshire CH8 7LS