Worcester Cathedral sits in a beautiful position overlooking the River Severn at Worcester. Built originally as Worcester Priory, its official name is The Cathedral Church of Christ and the Blessed Mary the Virgin of Worcester. One does not need to know much about history or architecture to enjoy the splendour that is Worcester cathedral a visit here is always an enjoyable experience.
Worcester Cathedral was built between 084-1504 and represents every style of English architecture from Norman to Gothic. The Cathedral is, rightly famous for its Norman Crypt and its unique Chapter house, (dating from 1120 and made octagonal on the outside when the walls were reinforced in the 14th century), its unusual Gothic bays, its fine woodwork and the central Tower. The first Priory was founded in 680 but nothing now remains from it. The Crypt dates from the 10th Century and there can still be seen remains of the Priory from the 12th and 13th centuries. The Priory came to an end with King Henry VIII’s Dissolution of the Monasteries. Worcester is also typical of English cathedrals in having a chapter house and cloister. Worcester Cathedral embodies many features that are highly typical of an English medieval cathedral. Parts of Worcester Cathedral date from every century from the 11th-16th, the tower is described as ‘exquisite’ and is best viewed from across the River Severn. The earliest part of the building at Worcester is the multi-columned Norman crypt which remains from the original monastic church begun by St Wulfstan in 1084. The Nave was built bit by bit and also by several different architects over a period of 200 years, from 1170-1374. The oldest parts show alternate layers of green sandstone from Highley in Shropshire and yellow Cotswold limestone. The east end built between 1224-1269 is built in a similar Early English style to Salisbury Cathedral. The last important addition is Prince Arthur’s Chantry Chapel to the right of the south choir aisle, 1502–04.The Victorians carried out extensive restorations between 1857-1874 and most of the fittings and the magnificent stained glass windows date from this time.
Official Website : worcestercathedral.co.uk
Worcester Cathedral has three choirs – the Worcester Cathedral Choir, Worcester cathedral Chamber Choir and the Worcester Cathedral Voluntary Choir. Since the 18th century, Worcester Cathedral Choir has taken part in the Three Choirs Festival, the oldest music festival in the world. Musical heritage, including that of Sir Edward Elgar, is still evident today. The Gerontius window, a memorial to Elgar is just one example, along with choral evensong and frequent concerts throughout the year
An image of the cathedral’s west facade appeared on the reverse of the Series E British £20 note commemorating Sir Edward Elgar, issued between 1999 and 2007. The notes are gradually being withdrawn from circulation to be replaced by a new series.
The Cathedral is open every day from 07.30am – 6.00pm. Entry is Free.
The Cathedral Shop
10.00am – 5.00pm Mon-Sat
12 noon – 4.00pm Sundays
The cafe is situated in the cloister, near College Green and opposite the Garth Garden.
10.00am – 5.00pm Mon – Sat
10.30 – 4.00pm Sundays
Tours of Worcester Cathedral
Historical Tours of Worcester Cathedral are available and can be pre-booked all year round. For further information contact the Cathedral Chapter office. It is also possible to just turn up at 11am or 2.30pm Mon-Sat from April until the end of November, or from December to March Saturdays only at the same times.
The Cathedral Tower
The Tower is open most days between April to the end of October (excepting Sundays) and there is a climb of 235 steps to the top which, once achieved, offers wonderful views over the City Centre, River Severn, the County Cricket Ground, Pitchcroft Racecourse, the Malvern Hills and the countryside beyond.
08.00am Holy Communion
10.30am Cathedral Eucharist
04.00pm Evensong or evening prayer
Monday – Saturday
08.00am Holy Communion
11.30am Holy Communion (Friday)
01.05pm Prayers for the sick (Monday)
01.05pm Holy Communion (Wednesday)
05.30pm Evensong or evening prayer
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