Many motorhome fanatics associate Peterborough with the annual National Motorhome and Campervan Show. For us in late December it represented a good place to break the journey on the way home from Norfolk to Northampton. The main tourist attraction I wanted to visit was Peterborough Cathedral.
Peterborough Cathedral – Its History
Originally founded in Anglo Saxon times the current architecture is from the Norman period when it was rebuilt in the 12th century. In the nave the original wooden ceiling completed between 1230 and 1250 remains. It’s one of only four wooden ceilings from the period that survives across Europe.
Peterborough Cathedral is also referred to as the Cathedral Church of St Peter, St Paul and St Andrew. Statues of these three saints look down from the famous West front of the building.
The Cathedral is also known as being the burial place of two Queens. Henry VIII’s first wife, Katherine of Aragon was buried here in 1536. Her grave can still be seen. It’s marked ‘Katherine Queen of England’, a title she was denied at the time of her death. The first image in this article is of her grave. The other Queen who was buried here was Mary Queen of Scots in 1587. She was executed at Fotheringhay Castle about 20 minutes drive away. When her son became King James I of England he had her body moved to Westminster Abbey.
The building was badly vandalised by Parliamentarians during the English Civil War in 1643. Some of the damage was repaired in the 17th and 18th centuries.
Peterborough Cathedral – Visitor Information
At the time of writing there was no charge for entry but donations are requested. If you want to take photographs of the interior then you will need to buy a camera permit costing £3.00. The cathedral is open every day except Boxing Day. Between Monday and Friday the opening hours are 9:00am to 5:15pm. On Saturday the hours are 9:00am to 3:00pm and on Sunday the hours are 12:00pm to 3:15pm.
For current information you can click here to visit the cathedral website.