Blackburn Cathedral, one of England’s newest cathedrals, is also one of the oldest places of Christian worship.
For many centuries this has been the Parish Church of Blackburn, dedicated to St. Mary the Virgin, and continues as a place of daily prayer and worship. It is the mother church of the Diocese which covers almost the whole of Lancashire and is a place where hospitable love of God is celebrated.
On your visit, please feel free to look around any part of the Cathedral. See the sun stream through the 56 different panes of coloured glass in the lantern tower with its aluminium spire. Come and listen to the world class Walker organ at one of the cathedral’s ambitious concerts or accompanying one of the six choirs which broadcast regularly for the BBC.
Transport yourself back to the bell-ringers of over 350 years ago as you listen to the peal of the 10 bells which were cast by Messrs John Taylor of Loughborough in 1949 and still rung in the “full circle” style today. In the north transept the 15th century misericords remind us of the days when these “mercy seats” provided some level of comfort for the those who had to stand for long periods of prayer.
All this time travel certainly works up an appetite so it’s time to stop for a bite to eat in the uniquely atmospheric surroundings of Cafe Northcote. When refreshed, take your time in the gift shop where you can purchase postcards to send home or souvenirs to remember your visit to this fine example of religious heritage.
• The cathedral is open half an hour before the act of worship each day and closes after Evening Prayer or Evensong.
• Blackburn Cathedral still retains its status as a parish church.
• Although the current building was completed in 1967, the site has been home to a church for over 1,000 years and the church, which was built in 1826 now forms the cathedral’s nave.
• A brief leaflet of welcome to the cathedral and a leaflet introducing The Journey are available at the rear of the Nave.
• Group visits are welcome and are available in the following areas:
The history of Blackburn Parish Church and Cathedral; The religious meaning of the building and its furnishings; Works of art and objects of interest or curiosity in the building; Meditative tour of The Journey – a set of fifteen life-size paintings by Penny Warden and one of the most important artistic commissions made by any cathedral in recent years which retell and evoke the story of the end of Christ’s life.
For more information please visit www.blackburncathedral.com