It may seem hard to believe, but when the foundation stones were laid for Truro Cathedral on 20th May 1880 by the future King Edward VII, they were the beginnings of the first Cathedral to be built in England since Salisbury in 1220.
Designed by John Loughborough Pearson, it is built mainly of Cornish granite in the medieval Gothic style with the more decorative features made out of the softer Bath stone. One of its more unusual features is that it includes part of the original Tudor St. Mary’s Parish Church and is a church within a church with the Dean of the Cathedral also being Rector of St Mary’s.
Being a Victorian building without centuries of history behind it means that it isn’t a magnet like some of the country’s more well-known churches, but that doesn’t mean to say that it’s not worth a visit, and for the price of a pint you can buy a short illustrated guide to the Cathedral which will give most visitors all the information they need.
The highlights include the stained glass (particularly the three Rose windows), The Reredos, Baptistry, Cornubia painting and my own particular favourite – The Way of the Cross terracotta frieze.
There is no charge to go in but as with all these buildings the ongoing costs are enormous and therefore donations are more than welcome, but if you buy the guide, you would be doing your bit to help keep the place going and also be doing yourself a favour by finding out that there’s more to this Cornish landmark than you might have expected.
ORIGINAL POST – SEPTEMBER 2017
LATEST UPDATE – OCTOBER 2021