Cathedral then and now

The first phase of the internal reordering of Leicester Cathedral has been completed in readiness for the reinterment of King Richard III at the end of March.

For the last 26 weeks, builders Fairhurst Ward Abbotts (FWA) have been working in the Cathedral while it remained open to the public.

The stunning conversion includes a new Sanctuary under the tower for the main altar, the creation of Christ the King Chapel at the east end of the building and the construction of an Ambulatory (a walking space) in which the King Richard III’s tomb will be built.

“The transformation of our Cathedral is so striking and more than we even hoped,” says the Very Revd David Monteith, the Dean of Leicester. “Suddenly we have become aware of the soaring arches and spacious beauty of our building. The craftsmanship is fantastic. All will be ready for March and the re-interment of Richard III.”

The project overcome several challenges, including discovering a number of underground crypts during the excavation works. Working closely the archeological team which discovered the remains of King Richard III, the builders lowered the height of these crypts and covered the voids.

“We’re proud to have played a role in such an important project and feel very privileged to have created a resting place for a King,” says Matt Webster Conservation Director of FWA.

The mortal remains of King Richard III will be received by the Cathedral on 22nd March and will lie in repose for three days before being reburied on the 26th March 2015.

 

We’ve been looking through the archives and found a great comparison picture to give a sense of how the Cathedral has changed in the past couple of years.

Here’s an image taken in 2012

Leicester Cathedral 2012

And one taken yesterday February 2015

Leicester Cathedral reordering