Chester Cathedral is a truly remarkable building, with a history spanning almost two thousand years.
According to legend, a prehistoric Druid temple existed on this site, which was succeeded by a Roman temple dedicated to Apollo.
When Christianity became the state religion of Rome in the fourth century AD, the pagan temple may have become a Christian church.
Certainly a church was founded here in 660, and in 875 the relics of St Werburgh were brought to Chester to protect them from attacks by the Vikings.
In 907 a church was built by King Alfred’s daughter, Queen Ethelfelda (‘The Lady of The Mercians’) specifically to house St Werburgh’s remains.
In 1092, the Norman Earl of Chester, Hugh Lupus (‘The Wolf’), the nephew of William the Conqueror, decided to found a great monastery in the heart of his administrative capital
The final part of the original building to be constructed was the Chapter House, completed in about 1250 and, by that time, the architectural style had changed to the Gothic, with its pointed arches and ribbed ceilings.
The west end was constructed about 1520.
Major restoration took place 1868-76 by George Gilbert Scott, although further work continued into the early twentieth century
CHALLENGE WIN – Decorated Ceiling Challenge in The English Church Group