By Amelia Meyer
England’s history is a fascinating and complex one. It has always been a significant centre for Christianity, which is confirmed by its abundance of ancient churches and grand cathedrals. Some of the best known of these include:
Officially called the Cathedral Church of Christ, Blessed Mary the Virgin and St Cuthbert of Durham, this church is located in Durham. It was established in 1093 of our Common Era (CE).
York Minster in York, England.
Its architecture is recognised as being some of the best displays of Norman skill in the world and has earned this church a UNESCO World Heritage Site award. It was originally constructed as the home for the Bishop of Durham, whose seat is the fourth most important in the Church of England. Visitors usually delight in visiting the relics of St Cuthbert, St Oswald of Northumbria’s head and the remains of the Venerable Bede.
This Somerset church was built at some time between 1175 and 1490. It is renowned for its romantic Early English design and many ornate carvings. The rare glass of the original structure is still in place in certain areas and the large central tower is impressive in its imposing beauty. Since its initial construction, Wells Cathedral has experienced a number of renovations and expansions. It is now a Grade I listed building according to English Heritage. Guided tours are conducted by volunteers and are free.
Situated in the English county of Yorkshire, this church dates back to between the 13th and 15th centuries. It is acclaimed as a spectacular medieval church, not only in England, but in all of Europe and is made especially beautiful by its glassworks, stone pieces and open spaces filled only by the majestic music. Like many of the other major churches in England, York Minster has become a tourist attraction, inviting people of all religious denominations to explore it. This church was actually built on the remains of the foundations of the Emperor Constantine’s Roman home. It is also the burial place of many noted Archbishops. Free guided tours are conducted by volunteer guides.
With over a million annual visitors, the world-famous Westminster Abbey remains one of London’s prime tourist attractions. The structure is more than seven centuries old and daily services are conducted and open to the public.
This is the Mother Church for the English and Welsh Roman Catholics and an important venue for high-profile events. It is a parish church, opened in 1903. Visitors will enjoy visiting the shrines of St John Southworth, an English saint who later became a martyr. Daily features include Holy Mass, the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and the famous singing of Mass by the acclaimed choir.
St Paul’s Cathedral on a magnificent clear summer day in London.
Holy Trinity Brompton
This Anglican church is known as the ‘home of the Alpha Course’, and is situated in Onslow Square, London. It holds eight services on Sundays, inviting locals and visitor alike to join in their worship. In addition to the Alpha Course, there are a number of other courses available through the Holy Trinity Brompton church, aimed at improving the lives and morals of participants.
Liverpool Anglican Cathedral
This is a relatively new church, having been built in the early 1900’s, but only completed some 70 years later. It remains the fifth largest Anglican Church in the world and the largest in all of the United Kingdom (which comprises England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland). It measures 188.7 metres in length and has a total area of 9687 square metres. Its tower alone is over 100 metres high.