|Cathedral Church of St Peter|
and the Holy and Indivisible Trinity
|51°52′03″N2°14′48″W / 51.8675°N 2.246667°W Coordinates: 51°52′03″N2°14′48″W / 51.8675°N 2.246667°W|
|Denomination||Church of England|
|Previous denomination||Roman Catholic|
|Dedication|| St Peter |
|Consecrated||15 July 1100|
|Functional status||Formerly Abbey, dissolved 1540. Cathedral since 1541.|
|Heritage designation||Grade I listed building|
|Length||426 ft 6 in (130.00 m)|
|Nave length||174 ft (53 m) |
|Choir length||140 ft (43 m) |
|Nave width||34 ft (10 m) |
|Width across transepts||144 ft (44 m)|
|Nave height||68 ft (21 m) |
|Choir height||86 ft (26 m) |
|Number of towers||1|
|Tower height||225 ft (69 m)|
|Diocese||Gloucester (since 1541)|
|Canon(s)||Nikki Arthy (City Rector)|
|Director of music||Adrian Partington|
|Chapter clerk||Emily Shepherd (COO)|
|Lay member(s) of chapter||Canon Peter Clark, Canon John Coates, Canon Paul Mason  |
Listed Building – Grade I
|Official name||Cathedral Church of the Holy and Indivisible Trinity|
|Designated||23 January 1952|
Gloucester Cathedral, formally the Cathedral Church of St Peter and the Holy and Indivisible Trinity, in Gloucester, England, stands in the north of the city near the River Severn. It originated with the establishment of a minster, Gloucester Abbey, dedicated to Saint Peter and founded by Osric, King of the Hwicce, in around 679. The subsequent history of the church is complex; Osric's foundation came under the control of the Benedictine Order at the beginning of the 11th century and in around 1058, Ealdred, Bishop of Worcester, established a new abbey "a little further from the place where it had stood". The abbey appears not to have been an initial success, by 1072, the number of attendant monks had reduced to two. The present building was begun by Abbott Serlo in about 1089, following a major fire the previous year.
Serlo's efforts transformed the abbey's fortunes; rising revenues and royal patronage enabled the construction of a major church. William the Conqueror held his Christmas Court at the chapter house in 1085, at which he ordered the compilation of Domesday Book. In October 1216, Henry III was crowned at the abbey. Following another disastrous fire in 1222, an ambitious rebuilding programme was begun. In the 14th century, the Great and Little Cloisters were constructed, displaying the earliest, and perhaps the finest, examples of fan vaulting anywhere. The cathedral contains the shrine of Edward II, who was murdered at Berkeley Castle nearby.
Following the Dissolution of the monasteries by Henry VIII in 1536, the abbey was refounded as a cathedral. The cathedral underwent much restoration in the 18th century, and again in the 19th. In 1989, it celebrated its 900th anniversary. In 2015, the installation of Rachel Treweek saw the Church of England appoint its first woman as a diocesan bishop. The cathedral has frequently been used as a filming location, including as a stand-in for Hogwarts in the Harry Potter movies.
The cathedral is a Grade I listed building. There are a large number of other listed buildings within the cathedral complex, many also listed at Grade I, the highest grade. These include the Treasury, the Chapter House, the Cloisters, the precinct wall and a number of the medieval gates into the cathedral enclosure. Others are listed at Grade II* and Grade II.
The first recorded religious building on the site was a minster founded by Osric of Hwicce in around 679.  A relative, Kyneburg, was consecrated as the first abbess by Bosel, Bishop of Worcester. Monastic life flourished, and the possessions of the house increased, but after 767 it seems probable that the nuns dispersed during the confusion of civil strife in England. Beornwulf of Mercia is said to have rebuilt the church, and to have endowed a body of secular priests with the former possessions of the nuns.  In 1022 Wulfstan, Bishop of Worcester, had the Benedictine rule introduced and the abbey dedicated to St Peter.  The early building history is confused; at some point in the early 1tth century the monastic buildings were destroyed by fire, and it is recorded that Ealdred, Bishop of Worcester rebuilt the church in around 1058 on a site "a little further from the place where it stood, and nearer to the side of the city".  [lower-alpha 1] The foundations of the present church were laid by Abbot Serlo (1072–1104).  Appointed by William the Conqueror in 1072, Serlo found a new building with a complement of only two monks and eight novices.  The situation was worsened by another major fire in 1088.  But the town retained its importance as a favoured royal seat; William celebrated Christmas there in 1085 when, in discussion with his Witan in the chapter house, he initiated the assembly of Domesday Book.  His support, together with that of others such as Walter de Lacy and his wife, [lower-alpha 2] enabled Serlo to embark on a major rebuilding, and between the laying of the foundation stone in 1089 and the abbey's re-consecration in 1100, work on the nave, the apse, the crypt and the chapter house was undertaken at speed  and on an "exceptional scale". 
St Peter's Abbey had long enjoyed important royal connections, from its foundation, then under the patronage of the Conqueror, and in October 1216 it was chosen as the venue for the coronation of Henry III, after the death of his father, King John.  The nine-year old boy was crowned in the presence of his mother Isabella, whose bracelet was reputedly used in place of a crown.  The abbey's royal connections continued, albeit in a darker vein, in the following century. In 1327, Edward II was buried in an elaborate shrine at Gloucester, following his death at Berkeley Castle nearby. Widely believed to have been murdered,  Edward was entombed at Gloucester in a lavish ceremony attended by his widow, Isabella and their young son, Edward. The abbey reputedly benefitted from substantial gifts donated by those making pilgrimage to Edward's shrine, although this is disputed. Nikolaus Pevsner suggests that the more likely source of revenue was the new king, making donations in piam memoriam.  Others support the traditional claim, and Jon Cannon, in his work, Cathedral: The great English cathedrals and the world that made them, is certain that the presence of the body of the dead king had a long-term, beneficial, impact on the abbey's fortunes, citing Henry VIII's later decision to make it a cathedral, on account of the presence of "many famous monuments of our renowned ancestors, kings of England." 
However occasioned, the cathedral's improved financial position enabled another great period of building. This work included the cloisters, with their famed fan vaulting.  St Peter's was unusual as a religious foundation in commissioning its own history, the Historia Monasterii Sancti Petri Gloucestriae. Its author, Walter Frocester (died 1412), became its first mitred abbot in 1381. 
At its inception, the abbey stood in the see of Worcester; but its position was transformed at the Dissolution of the monasteries. Following abolition, Henry VIII created the new Diocese of Gloucester and on 3 September 1541,  the abbey church became its cathedral, with John Wakeman, last abbot of Tewkesbury, as its first bishop.  The diocese covered the greater part of Gloucestershire, with small parts of Herefordshire and Wiltshire. Although staunchly Royalist in its sympathies, the city, and the cathedral, escaped largely unscathed from the tumult of the English Civil War and plans for complete demolition formulated during the Commonwealth were not taken forward. 
"My eye just now caught the word 'restoration' in the morning papers, and on looking closer, I saw that this time it is nothing less than the Minster of Tewkesbury that is to be destroyed by Sir George Gilbert Scott."
—William Morris on Scott's plans for Tewkesbury Abbey. 
The 18th and 19th centuries saw repeated periods of reconstruction, renovation and rebuilding. Counter to the approach sometimes adopted elsewhere in the Victorian era, the 19th restorations at Gloucester, firstly by the local architects, Frederick S. Waller and Thomas Fulljames, and latterly by George Gilbert Scott, were "on the whole, very tactful" [see box].  [lower-alpha 3] During the Second World War a recess in the crypt was used to house the Coronation Chair, which had been moved in August 1939 from Westminster Abbey for safe keeping. The 13th century bog-oak effigy of Robert Curthose was placed on the chair and the whole covered by sandbags. The Great East Window was also dismantled and placed in storage.  The remainder of the 10,000 sandbags supplied by the Office of Works were used to protect the other monuments in the cathedral, including the tomb of Edward II. 
The cathedral celebrated its 900th anniversary in 1989. In 2015 Rachel Treweek was installed as bishop, the first woman to be appointed to a diocesan bishopric in the history of the Church of England.  In September 2016 Gloucester Cathedral joined the Church of England's 'Shrinking the footprint' campaign, intended to reduce the Church of England's carbon emissions by 80% by 2050. The cathedral commissioned a solar array on the cathedral roof which is expected to reduce the cathedral's energy costs by 25%.  The installation was completed by November 2016, making the 1,000-year-old cathedral the oldest one in the UK with a solar installation.  
The cathedral consists of a Norman nave (Walter de Lacy is buried there), with additions in every style of Gothic architecture. It is 420 feet (130 m) long, and 144 feet (44 m) wide, with a fine central tower of the 15th century rising to the height of 225 ft (69 m) and topped by four delicate pinnacles, a famous landmark.
The crypt, nave and chapter house date from the late 11th century. The crypt is one of the four apsidal cathedral crypts in England, the others being at Worcester, Winchester and Canterbury. The nave was begun in 1089. The church was largely complete by 1100. In the early 12th century, the western towers were added; the south tower collapsed around 1165.
In 1222, a fire damaged the timber roof and several of the monastic buildings. To repair the damage and update the architectural style, an ambitious building campaign was launched, including the revaulting of the nave Early English style (completed 1243); the construction of the central tower (begun 1237); the rebuilding of the collapsed south tower (completed 1246); and the rebuilding of the refectory. 
The south aisle was rebuilt in 1318–29. The most notable monument is the canopied shrine of Edward II of England who was murdered at nearby Berkeley Castle in 1327. Pilgrimages to the tomb brought a huge influx of cash enabling the rebuilding and redecorating of the south transept (1329–37), the north transept (1368–73), and the choir (1350–77). The Norman choir walls are sheathed in Perpendicular tracery. The multiplication of ribs, liernes and bosses in the choir vaulting is particularly rich. The late Decorated Great East window is partly filled with surviving medieval stained glass. When completed in 1350, it was the largest window in existence.  One window is said to depict the earliest images of the game of golf. This dates from 1350, over 300 years earlier than the earliest image of golf from Scotland.  Another image, carved on a misericord, shows people playing a ball game, which has been suggested as one of the earliest images of medieval football.  Between the apsidal chapels is a cross Lady chapel, and north of the nave are the cloisters, the carrels or stalls for the monks' study and writing lying to the south. In a side-chapel is a monument in coloured bog oak of Robert Curthose, eldest son of William the Conqueror and a great benefactor of the abbey, who was interred there. Monuments of William Warburton (Bishop of Gloucester) and Edward Jenner (physician) are also worthy of note. The coronation of Henry III is commemorated in a stained-glass window in the south aisle. 
Between 1873 and 1890, and in 1897, the cathedral was extensively restored by George Gilbert Scott. The cathedral has forty-six 14th-century misericords and twelve 19th-century replacements by Gilbert Scott. Both types have a wide range of subject matter: mythology, everyday occurrences, religious symbolism and folklore. 
The cloisters at Gloucester are the earliest surviving fan vaults in England, having been designed between 1351 and 1377 by Thomas de Cantebrugge.  [lower-alpha 4] David Verey and Alan Brooks, in the 2002 revised volume, Gloucestershire 2: The Vale and the Forest of Dean, in the Pevsner Buildings of England series, call them "the most memorable in England".  The cathedral itself suggests that they form "the first and best example of fan vaulting in the world".  [lower-alpha 5] The cloisters stand to the north of the cathedral and, along with the cathedral precincts to the north and east, contain a number of listed buildings. The Great Cloister itself is listed at Grade I,  as are the Little Cloister  and Little Cloister House,  the remains of a reservoir in the north-west corner of the Great Cloister  and a passage from the cloister to the former Infirmary,  the remains of the infirmary itself,  and the north Precinct Wall. 
The other major structures within the precincts are the Chapter house and the Treasury and library. They date initially from the 11th century, although they have undergone major reconstruction in subsequent centuries. Both are Grade I listed buildings. The treasury adjoins the main cathedral on its northern side, with the library above it, and the chapter house adjoins the treasury.  
Other structures in the precincts now form part of King's School, Gloucester including: the remains of the Abbott's lodgings  and Dulverton House,  both listed at Grade II*, and the gymnasium,  Dulverton House Coachhouse,  Wardle House,  Palace Cottage  and a set of railings surrounding a playground,  all of which are listed at Grade II.
College Green lies to the south and west of the cathedral, forming its cathedral close.  It was originally the site of a series of monastic graveyards, but was largely rebuilt in the 18th century when many of the buildings were converted to domestic use.  Miller's Green forms a close to the north of the cathedral and was originally the monastic service court. Both Miller's Green and College Green contain a large number of Listed buildings. College Green is entered through St Michael's Gate, which dates from the 14th century and is listed at Grade I.  No.s 1,  2,  3,  and 4  are listed Grade II and stand between St Michael's Gate and King Edward's Gate, which dates from the 16th century, was subject to a major restoration in the 19th century and is listed at II*.  No.s 6,  7,  and 8 conclude the south-western edge of the green and are all listed at Grade II.  No.9 College Green begins the western range of the close and is listed Grade II*.  The western range includes No.s 10,  11,  12, Beaufort House,  and 13,  all of which are listed at Grade II, and concludes with No. 14, which is listed Grade II*.  The close is then broken by St Mary's Gateway, a scheduled monument.  The War Memorial to the Royal Gloucestershire Hussars Yeomanry, a Grade II* listed structure, stands in the centre of College Green.  The northern side of College Green concludes with No. 15, Community House, which is Grade II listed,  and Church House, which was originally the Abbot's Lodge and is now utilised as offices and a restaurant and is listed at Grade I.  On the south-eastern edge of the Green, No.s 17,  18  and 19  are listed at Grade II, while 20 College Green is Grade II*. 
Miller's Green is entered through the Inner Gateway, between Community House and No. 7, Miller's Green. The gateway dates from the 14th century and formed the gatehouse to the monastic service court. It is a Grade I listed building,  while No. 7 is listed at Grade II.  Other buildings on Miller's Green include the Deanery, listed at Grade II*,  the Old Mill House, No. 2 Miller's Green, listed at Grade II,  and No.s 3,  4A,  4B,  5  and 6,  all listed at Grade II.
In medieval times, daily worship was sung by boys and monks from the abbey. The cathedral's current choir was established by King Henry VIII in 1539, and at present is composed of 18 boy and 20 girl choristers, as well as 12 adult singers. The choristers attend the King's School, which was also founded by Henry VIII. The choir sings regularly during term time and at major religious festivals such as Christmas or Easter. It also takes part in concerts and has been featured in choral evensong on BBC Radio 3. 
The organ was originally constructed in 1666 by Thomas Harris and has the only complete 17th-century cathedral organ case surviving in the country. The pipes displayed on the front of the case are still functional. The organ was extended and modified by nearly all of the established UK organ builders, including Henry "Father" Willis who worked on the organ in 1847 and rebuilt it in 1888–89.   It was rebuilt again in 1920 by Harrison & Harrison. 
In 1971 Hill, Norman and Beard performed a total redesign, under the supervision of Cathedral Organist John Sanders and consultant Ralph Downes. In 1999 Nicholson & Co overhauled the organ, when the soundboards, pipework and wind supply were renovated and the computer system was updated. In 2010 Nicholson also added a Trompette Harmonique solo reed. 
The organ comprises four manuals and pedals. It is designed particularly to play from its position on the Quire screen to both East and West sides of the cathedral. The Swell is situated in the centre of the case at console level and is controlled by two swell pedals, one for each side of the case. Directly above the Swell is the Great organ which is split into East and West divisions; it comprises two separate principal choruses. The fourth manual is a West Positive, mirroring the function of the Choir organ for the West side of the cathedral. 
In 1582, Robert Lichfield is recorded as the organist of Gloucester Cathedral. Notable among the organists are composers and choral conductors of the Three Choirs Festival, Herbert Brewer, Herbert Sumsion and John Sanders. Herbert Howells, who was a pupil of Brewer, composed a Magnificat and Nunc dimittis for Gloucester Cathedral
An annual musical festival, the Three Choirs Festival, is hosted by turns in this cathedral and those of Worcester and Hereford in rotation.  The Three Choirs is the oldest annual musical festival in the world.
The cathedral's clock, bells and the chimes are referred to in a repair agreement of 1525. The present clock, installed in 1898, is by Dent and Co, who built the clock for Big Ben. There is no external dial, but there is a fine Art Nouveau clock face in the north transept, dating from 1903, designed by Henry Wilson. 
The bells were rehung and augmented in 1978 to give a ring of twelve. The two oldest bells date from before 1420, so they are older than the present tower. The bells are rung 'full circle' by the cathedral's band of ringers for the weekly practice session In addition there is Great Peter, the largest medieval bell in Britain, weighing a fraction under three tons. Great Peter is the hour bell and can also be heard ringing before the main services. 
Gloucester Cathedral has a large collection of funerary monuments from the Middle Ages to the present. Notable people buried at Gloucester Cathedral include:
The cathedral has been used as a filming location for movies and for TV including: the first, second and sixth Harry Potter movies;  the Doctor Who episodes The Next Doctor   and the Fugitive of the Judoon ;  The Hollow Crown ;  Wolf Hall ;  the Sherlock special The Abominable Bride ;   Mary Queen of Scots ;  and all three of The Cousins' War adaptations – The White Queen ,  The White Princess  and The Spanish Princess . 
Degree ceremonies of the University of Gloucestershire and the University of the West of England (through Hartpury College) both take place at the cathedral.   The cathedral is also used during school term-time as the venue for assemblies (known as morning chapel) by The King's School, Gloucester, and for events by the Denmark Road High School, Crypt Grammar School, Sir Thomas Rich's School for boys and Ribston Hall High School. 
Gloucester is a cathedral city and the county town of Gloucestershire in the South West of England. Gloucester lies on the River Severn, between the Cotswolds to the east and the Forest of Dean to the west, 19 miles (31 km) east of Monmouth and 17 miles (27 km) east of the border with Wales. Including suburban areas, Gloucester has a population of around 132,000. It is a port, linked via the Gloucester and Sharpness Canal to the Severn Estuary.
The Abbey Church of St Mary the Virgin, Tewkesbury–commonly known as Tewkesbury Abbey–is located in the English county of Gloucestershire. A former Benedictine monastery, it is now a parish church. Considered one of the finest examples of Norman architecture in Britain, it has the largest Romanesque crossing tower in Europe.
Deerhurst is a village and civil parish in Gloucestershire, England, about 2 miles (3 km) southwest of Tewkesbury. The village is on the east bank of the River Severn. The parish includes the village of Apperley and the hamlet of Deerhurst Walton. The 2011 Census recorded the parish's population as 906, the majority of whom live in Apperley.
Evesham Abbey was founded by Saint Egwin at Evesham in Worcestershire, England between 700 and 710 following an alleged vision of the Virgin Mary by a swineherd by the name of Eof.
Bristol Cathedral, the Cathedral Church of the Holy and Undivided Trinity, is the Church of England cathedral in the city of Bristol, England. Founded in 1140 and consecrated in 1148, it was originally St Augustine's Abbey but after the Dissolution of the Monasteries it became in 1542 the seat of the newly created Bishop of Bristol and the cathedral of the new Diocese of Bristol. It is a Grade I listed building.
A fan vault is a form of vault used in the Gothic style, in which the ribs are all of the same curve and spaced equidistantly, in a manner resembling a fan. The initiation and propagation of this design element is strongly associated with England.
Northleach is a market town and former civil parish, now in parish Northleach with Eastington, in the Cotswold district, in Gloucestershire, England. The town is in the valley of the River Leach in the Cotswolds, about 10 miles (16 km) northeast of Cirencester and 11 miles (18 km) east-southeast of Cheltenham. The 2011 Census recorded the parish's population as 1,854, the same as Northleach built-up-area.
The King's School is a co-educational private day school in Gloucester, in the county of Gloucestershire, England. It traces its heritage to a monastic school founded in the 11th century in the cloisters of Gloucester Cathedral. It became one of seven 'King's Schools' established, or re-endowed by King Henry VIII in 1541 after the Dissolution of the Monasteries.
Apperley is a village in Gloucestershire, England, about 3 miles (5 km) southwest of Tewkesbury, 1 mile (1.6 km) south of Deerhurst and 1⁄3 mile (0.5 km) east of the River Severn. It is the largest settlement in Deerhurst civil parish. In 2020 it had an estimated population of 625.
Dumbleton is a village and civil parish in the English county of Gloucestershire. The village is roughly 20 miles from the city of Gloucester. The village is known to have existed in the time of Æthelred I who granted land to Abingdon Abbey, and it is mentioned in the Domesday Book.
Muchelney Abbey is an English Heritage property in the village of Muchelney in the Somerset Levels, England. The site consists of ruined walls showing the layout of the abbey buildings constructed from the 7th to 16th centuries, and the remaining intact Abbot's House. It is next to the parish church in which some of the fabric of the abbey has been reused.
Odda's Chapel is a former chantry chapel at Deerhurst, Gloucestershire. It is an 11th-century late Anglo-Saxon building, completed a decade before the Norman Conquest of England.
Purton is a hamlet on the west bank of the River Severn, in the civil parish of Lydney in Gloucestershire, England. It lies opposite the village of Purton near Berkeley on the east bank of the river.
Mendip is a local government district in the English county of Somerset. The Mendip district covers a largely rural area of 285 square miles (738 km2) ranging from the Mendip Hills through on to the Somerset Levels. It has a population of approximately 11,000. The administrative centre of the district is Shepton Mallet.
Forthampton is a village in Gloucestershire, England The village is located three miles from the market town of Tewkesbury and features "a great number of interesting buildings", fine views, several duck ponds, a church, a collection of thatched cottages and farmsteads, a village hall and a village club. Forthampton was designated a Conservation Area in 2003 due to its special architectural and historic interest, character and appearance which it was desirable to preserve and enhance. Notable features of the village include extensive historic buildings clustered around farm houses situated at the centre of the village, the many roadside ponds and grass verges around and between buildings and significant panoramic views.
Leonard Stanley Priory was a priory in Gloucestershire, England. Over the years following the dissolution most of the buildings of the priory complex have been destroyed.
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Lechlade Manor in Lechlade, Gloucestershire, England, is a Victorian country house built for George Milward, a lawyer, by John Loughborough Pearson. Primarily an ecclesiastical architect, working on over 200 church buildings in his fifty-year career, the manor represents one of Pearson's rare forays into secular building. Dating from 1872 to 1873, Lechlade was subsequently sold to the Sisters of St Clotilde and operated as a convent for much of the 20th century. In the 1990s, it was converted back to a private residence, with some enabling development in the grounds. Lechlade Manor is a Grade II listed building.
The Yorke Almshouses, Nos. 14–17 Church Row, Forthampton, Gloucestershire, England, are a range of four almshouses designed by the architect William Burges in 1865. The block is a Grade II listed building and the almshouses remain private residences.
The graduation ceremonies will take place at Gloucester Cathedral on Thursday November 19 and Friday November 20, 2020
Award ceremonies at Gloucester Cathedral on 3–5 November 2021