Hereford Cathedral Reopens for Tourism

With the cathedral now re-opened for tourism, we are very pleased to be able to share details of some of the activities and events that visitors can enjoy throughout the summer. 

Hands Across The Centuries Exhibition

Monday 17 May to Saturday 17 July 2021 | 10am – 5pm

In the Mappa Mundi and Chained Library, today's calligraphers meet medieval scribes in this new special exhibition resulting from a year-long collaboration between Hereford Cathedral Library and Shropshire Scribes.

Early in 2020, before the first lockdown, members of Shropshire Scribes visited Hereford Cathedral to take a close look at manuscripts from its renowned Chained Library and choose some as starting points for their own work. The 'Hands across the centuries exhibition' enables all to see the results: an amazingly diverse, lively and colourful display of new pieces alongside the medieval manuscripts which inspired them.

Shropshire Scribes is a well-established group of both amateur and professional calligraphers who hold monthly workshops and exhibit regularly in the Shrewsbury area. The group includes beginners and expert artists, from school age to octogenarian, and they combine centuries-old techniques and materials with contemporary approaches.

This exhibition allows visitors to experience the fascinating art and craft of calligraphy, an important part of which is the appreciation of the skills and artistry of medieval scribes.

Rosemary Firman, Cathedral Librarian, said: "The exhibition is a true meeting of minds, as well as hands, across the ages. Starting from some of our most beautiful manuscripts the Shropshire Scribes have produced an astonishing range of work: funny, thoughtful, poetic, skillful."

Peter Furniss, Chairman of Shropshire Scribes, added: “This has been a wonderful opportunity to study the medieval manuscripts held in the Chained Library. We have been able to gain a better understanding of the practical aspects of the tools and materials used in their construction but most of all a glimpse into the medieval minds of their creators through the relationships of art and text on the pages.”

The exhibition runs from Monday 17 May to Saturday 17 July 2021 and is shown within the Mappa Mundi and Chained Library exhibition, during normal opening hours. The normal admission charge of £6 per person applies (family tickets are also available). An exhibition catalogue is also available online, showing the new works alongside the manuscripts which inspired them:

Hereford Cathedral Open Gardens

Selected Wednesdays & Saturdays | June - September 2021 | Tickets: £5

This summer, Hereford Cathedral will be hosting a series of Open Garden events for visitors.

Leading down to the River Wye, the gardens are a hidden gem nestled within the cathedral grounds. At their own leisure, visitors can explore the peaceful Cloisters, the colourful Canon’s garden, the private gardens of the Dean and Bishop and the historical Chapter House garden. A team of volunteer gardeners and guides will be on hand to answer questions and also share the fascinating history of these beautiful spaces, most of which aren’t normally open to the public.

Each summer, the gardens would normally be opened for guided tours but due to the ongoing restrictions in 2020, these tours were not able to take place. Instead, the cathedral team organised two Open Garden days which were fully booked within weeks and proved to be a hit with visitors. This year, as guidance around restrictions is likely to change throughout the summer months, the cathedral has decided to increase the amount of Open Garden events so that these beautiful spaces can be shared with as many people as possible.

The cathedral gardens are cared for by a team of Volunteers who, following the devastating floods of last year and then a significant period of lockdown, have worked incredibly hard to ensure that they are returned to their normal high standards.

Jess Stallwood, Events Officer, said: “We were really pleased with the feedback we received from last year’s Open Gardens events and look forward to being able to host more this summer. Whether you are an avid gardener looking for inspiration or are just looking for a bench to sit on in beautiful surroundings for the afternoon, we would love for you to join us!”

Tickets cost £5 and booking is essential via the cathedral website as the capacity will be limited to support with social distancing.